Two parents from a Chicago suburb are in custody after leaving their children tied up and blindfolded in the parking lot of a Wal-Mart in Lawrence, Kan., police said.
Adolfo Gomez Jr., 52 and Deborah Gomez, 43, of Northlake, Ill., were booked on suspicion of two counts each of child abuse and five counts each of child endangerment, according to NBC station KSHB in nearby Kansas City, Mo.
Douglas County prosecutors Thursday morning were reviewing the case and told LJWorld.com of Lawrence they could file charges later in the day.
A customer called police Wednesday to report a young boy tied up and blindfolded outside a Chevrolet Suburban. When officers arrived, they found a 5-year-old boy and 7-year-old girl bound and blindfolded outside the vehicle in the parking lot, Sgt. Trent McKinley told KSHB.
Three other children, ages 12, 13 and 15, were inside the vehicle, McKinley said.
"They were certainly upset by the events of the day," he said. "When we contacted the two children that were outside the vehicle, and took the male into custody, the remaining three didn't wanna come out of the car."
Officers said they used a stun gun to subdue a man believed to be the children's father. A photo posted on LJWorld.com shows the man being handcuffed by authorities.
The family was on its way to Arizona when they pulled off I-70 due to car trouble, police told KSHB.
“I’ve been a police officer for 21 years and this is certainly one of the more unusual and more disturbing calls that I’ve been on,” McKinley said to the Kansas City Star. “As we continue the investigation and interviews (with the children), we are hoping to understand the dynamics of the family, what’s occurred the last couple of days and possibly what their intentions were.”
Police are working with child welfare officials to make sure the kids are taken care of while their parents are in jail, KSHB reported.
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