ONTD Political

MD girl, 3, left behind at Chuck E. Cheese; parents find out after she appears on evening news

1:52 pm - 03/07/2012

A pair of Maryland parents left their 3-year-old daughter behind at a Chuck E. Cheese after a party - and didn't realize it until seeing her on the news hours later.

The tot, named Harmony, was left behind at the Bel Air family pizza joint after her parents attended a large party on Sunday, ABC News reported.

Her parents are separated, and both assumed the girl had gone home with the other, authorities said.

Staff members didn't realize the girl had been left behind until around 8 p.m., when she approached a worker to ask for a drink, ABC News reported.

Hartford County cops eventually called local news stations after they were unable to find her parents, and the little girl appeared on a local 11 p.m. broadcast.

Both parents called the sheriff's office after the segment ran, authorities said.

Eventually, Harmony's mom picked her up.

Child welfare agents said the incident was an accident and charges aren't expected to be filed.

Neither parent was identified.

Source thinks it could have gone a hellllll of a lot worse than it went... and is super glad it didn't.
snoozeen 7th-Mar-2012 07:04 pm (UTC)
Something similar happened to me:

We were at a youth baseball field and my parents had driven separately and each thought the other had me when they left.

My dad said it was the worst day of his life. :(

The crazy part to me was this: I was a five year-old walking around crying and not a single adult stopped me and asked what was wrong. And I wasn't in a private area of the park. There were adults and others walking all around me, getting ready to leave as the last game was finishing and it was near sundown. It was a 12 year old player to finally stop and ask me if I needed help. That's the crazy part. Where the fuck were the adults? Why weren't they asking a crying child what was wrong? Like...it blows my mind. Luckily, my family was involved with the league, so when I was taken to someone who ran the show, they immediately called my parents and drove me to my parents and the police car outside my house.

I remember that day so specifically, at least all the stuff at the park. Then I remember being in my parents' arms and who cares about anything after that, right? Nothing like that kind of safety.

Edited at 2012-03-07 07:05 pm (UTC)
chaya 7th-Mar-2012 07:22 pm (UTC)
I can never understand that. I get that adults don't want to be misunderstood and yelled at for talking to a kid that they don't know, but there's nothing wrong with watching the kid cry a while, determine nobody is collecting said crying kid, and then swooping in.
grace_om 7th-Mar-2012 07:27 pm (UTC)
This. Having organized many kids parties in my day, as a host I would have making sure every kid was accounted for, and not left myself until they had all been picked up to go home.
simply_blah 7th-Mar-2012 07:51 pm (UTC)
OMG. You poor bb!
nothingmuch 7th-Mar-2012 10:10 pm (UTC)
They all probably assumed you were a brat throwing a fit for no good reason & your parents were probably nearby & thought "I don't wanna get yelled at by an angry parent for talking to their kid." :(

Edited at 2012-03-07 10:10 pm (UTC)
blackbare 7th-Mar-2012 10:11 pm (UTC)
That's so scary! I'm glad someone finally came to you and you got back to your family safe.

I know what you mean about adults not coming to check on you. I went on a ski trip when I was 8 or 9 and I twisted my ankle, but my family and friends were already waiting for me by the lunch area (idek, I barely remember the layout of the place) so they weren't around to help me or to help take my skis off. I basically cried/screamed there for almost 30 minutes in pain and trying to get my skis off myself and not a single adult or kid came to see what was wrong. Finally my brother came looking for me and found me lying there, still crying and DYING of pain. LOL. My ma said she saw him yelling at the people who were just standing around later on.

Sry. Long/unnecessary comment is long/unnecessary :3
chaya 7th-Mar-2012 10:13 pm (UTC)
Oh my god if you had been my kid I would have murdered everyone to DEATH. You do not just leave a kid like that, ESPECIALLY when it's so clear that they've been injured, what the GRRRRRRRR
lilyginny27 8th-Mar-2012 12:27 am (UTC)
My older sister didn't like being forced to walk me home from school my first day of kindergarten so she left me there. It was a teacher from the school next door where [I was supposed to meet her on the corner between the two schools] that helped me after everyone and all the buses had left. He eventually found my home phone number and called my sister and she STILL refused to come get me and sent my brother instead. She got grounded; I gained a lifetime of anxiety and fear of abandonment.
snoozeen 8th-Mar-2012 12:31 am (UTC)
I hope you don't mind me saying this about your sister: what an asshole.

In this story, my brother did something similar: he and I were supposed to go with our mom but we both decided to stay. He was supposed to tell my dad I was staying while I skipped off to play with my friends. He didn't. That, and my mom dying six months after this has given me my anxiety and fear of abandonment. OMG if someone was three minutes late picking me up, I'd be shaking and crying and thinking the worst possible things to have happened. :/
lilyginny27 8th-Mar-2012 12:51 am (UTC)
OMG I know what you mean. My parents are divorced so whenever dad was supposed to pick us up, I would stand at the window and wait for him, and if he was a second late, I would flip out. When he remarried, I bawled the entire ceremony. Not because I didn't like who he was marrying, but because I didn't think he was coming back from the honeymoon. I was convinced he was moving to Disney World and not taking me with him or coming back. I wouldn't leave his side the entire day. My family jokes about it now [and really, my stepmom was a fucking saint for marrying this man with such fucked up kids], but not surprisingly, I've been in therapy for years from all this.

And yes, I spent his entire honeymoon practically sedated I had so many anxiety attacks.
stormqueen280 8th-Mar-2012 03:18 am (UTC)
Wow. Lovely person, your sister.
spiegel11th 8th-Mar-2012 08:18 am (UTC)
Wow. The worst my brother ever did was leave me on the bus (I was five or so, he was eight), and that was a school bus so when it got to the last stop the bus driver came down and asked me where I was meant to be (last stop was a highschool). Fortunately, it was right close by my school (I basically had to cut through some scrub and a paddock and I'd be where I was meant to be), so I was fine.
Your sister's an arse, though.
romp 8th-Mar-2012 01:44 am (UTC)
Yeah, people need to drop the "mind your own business" shit and help those in need. FFS
kitbug 8th-Mar-2012 03:50 am (UTC)
That happened to me sort of, but I don't remember it because I was like 3. I wandered off into a corn field while my parents were at an auction and they were looking at different things and one thought the other had me and vice versa. Several hours of panicking later, I wander back out of the corn field, happy as a clam. XD
astridmyrna 8th-Mar-2012 06:56 am (UTC)
I do not understand this mindset. A few months ago I was at the mall and I saw a 6-7 year old little boy crying his eyes out, bawling "Mama Mama", and following the guard rail (we were on the second floor). That mall was packed, and pretty much no one even gave him a glance. So I went over there and asked if he couldn't find his parents, he nodded, and I walked him to the nearest store and biggest store at the mall (Macy's), told the rep that the kid was lost and to make an announcement. Bought the kid a chocolate bar and tied his shoes and waited for the parents to come, who looked like they had the fright of their lives.

The only thing I can think of of why most adults won't help is they think that somehow, someway, they'll get in trouble or that they're in too big of a rush to help a kid who's clearly distressed. I dunno, but I'm glad that 12 year old had enough sense to help you than the adults who are supposed to be adults.
dustbunny105 8th-Mar-2012 09:26 pm (UTC)
I've never been lost or forgotten for more than a few minutes, but my sister had a scare a few years ago. A family friend was taking my brother out to the park, and my sister decided at the last minute that she wanted to go too. They were already driving off when she biked back home, so she tried to go after them. They never noticed her, but she followed them far enough that when she finally gave up, she looked around and realized she didn't know where she was. She wandered around crying for several hours, and even approached two women for help who blew her off (which did very bad things for her anxiety and trust issues, thanks ever so, ladies). Luckily, she passed by the house of a boy who recognized her from school and he got his dad, who called my mom to get her.

I didn't even know she was lost until they got back. The last I'd spoken to her, she'd been going to a friend's house to play. She actually walked in the door-- and threw herself into my arms, sobbing-- just as I was putting on my shoes to go make her come home.
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