KENT, Wash. - Police said a Tacoma mother left her 3-year-old son alone in an SUV, cold and crying, while she went inside a casino to gamble.
Police said the incident happened Nov. 17 at the Great American Casino on Kent's East Hill.
Investigators said the woman parked her SUV there around 11:30 a.m. and went inside to play blackjack.
According to Kent police, a casino employee spotted the boy inside a Toyota Forerunner with its window partially down.
Casino management called 911. Police said when they found the boy he was crying and cold. Kent police said when officers asked the child where his mother was, he pointed at the casino.
Investigators said the boy's mother, 26-year-old Candice Robinson, walked past officers when she came out to the parking lot. When officers asked her if the Toyota was hers, she said no, police said.
Officers said when they asked Robinson if the child was her son, she said yes and told them she was only gone for five minutes trying to win some money for gas.
Detectives who reviewed surveillance cameras said the boy was alone for 26 minutes.
Police said the SUV's gas tank was full at the time of the incident.
Robinson will be charged with child neglect.
Police notified Child Protective Services.