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Arizona 9-Year-Old Allegedly Left at McDonald's so Mom Could Gamble

Jaimie-lee Prince
Jun 26, 2019
04:38 P.M.
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An Arizona mother was arrested after she left her child at McDonald's to go gambling in a casino.


On Wednesday night at about 8:30 p.m., Stacy Rupp brought her son to a McDonald's in Peoria — and then she left him there, reported Yahoo News. 

Rupp, 34, then headed to Desert Diamond Casino which lies one mile away. The nine-year-old appeared "dirty and disheveled" to McDonald's workers, so they called the police to report abandonment. 

The boy himself was neither upset nor unaccustomed to his mother's behavior. "She always comes back," he reportedly told the police. He was left at the restaurant for at least two hours. 


According to the report from the Peoria Police Department, the staff treated him to ice cream, cookies, and even a coloring book. His mother arrived mere minutes after law enforcement. 

She attempted to give a valid excuse by saying she had been shopping at Fry's Marketplace, which was close by the McDonald's. However, she could not provide any proof. 

Soon, she confessed and said she had "messed up" by going to the casino. She further accused her son as driving her crazy and stealing her money, so that's why she left him. 


Alleged court documents pointed out that Rupp "did not provide a cell phone or any type of means of communication to the victim for him to get in contact of her in case of an emergency," reported AZ Family.

Meanwhile, surveillance tapes showed the mother entering and exiting the casino at least twice as her son waited for her by himself. She was charged with child abuse and endangerment. 

Rupp reportedly has other children, but while in court on Friday she convinced the judge not to issue a no-contact order with the affected son. She insisted that it would be "detrimental" to him as he is a "mama's boy."


She cried as she spoke to the judge, claiming that she was with her son "every night." The woman was released on her recognizance and a new court date was set for July. 

An alleged neighbor of Rupp spoke to AZ family and said that she regularly sees the boy "running around in his underwear." As such, the situation "doesn't surprise [her] at all."

Another woman who put her two children in danger was Crystal Gonzales of California. She left the two infants in a car and went shopping in Walmart for about half an hour. 


Gonzales had locked the SUV and left the windows up and almost fully closed. The children endured close to 100-degree temperatures. Luckily, people observed they were there, and a policewoman was among them.

They surrounded the vehicle and interrogated Gonzales as soon as she came out. After ensuring the children were fine, Gonzales was arrested for child endangerment while the children were placed in Child Protective Services.