The popular game Pokemon GO has resulted in the parents of an Arizona 2-year-old being arrested for child neglect and endangerment. The pair, in their mid-to-late 20s, allegedly left their toddler home alone so they could go out and hunt for Pokemon characters. As Fox News reports, the parents have been identified as 27-year-old Brent Daley and his wife, 25-year-old Brianna Daley of Pinal County.
Reportedly, the Pokemon GO-playing parents’ activities were brought to the attention of local law enforcement when dispatch received a 911 call from a neighbor. The incident took place at about 10:30 p.m. local time, and during the call, the neighbor told authorities that she had seen the 2-year-old playing outside alone and that it didn’t look like the toddler had any supervision.
When the police arrived at the scene, the toddler was found home alone. The home of the parents, who were allegedly playing Pokemon GO when the police arrived, was reportedly unlocked. According to deputies, the little boy was discovered outside, and the 2-year-old was reportedly hot, dirty, barefoot, and alone while his parents were off playing Pokemon GO.
Deputies report that upon finding the 2-year-old unsupervised, overheated, filthy, and endangered, they called the child’s father. Reportedly, the deputies got Brent Daley on the phone while he was away, presumably still playing Pokemon GO. They told him that they’d found his 2-year-old all alone and outside, to which authorities alleged the Pokemon GO-playing father responded, “Whatever.”
He then terminated the call.
Police reported that they waited at the home for the abandoned child’s parents to return from playing Pokemon GO. When they arrived back at the house, they reportedly admitted openly to law enforcement that they had, in fact, left their young child home alone in order to play Pokemon GO.
According to the parents, they were playing Pokemon GO only in “nearby neighborhoods,” and their 2-year-old had been sleeping when they left him alone in the house.
@KTVU They kept feeding the child candy but it failed to evolve. It did do well battling the family cat during training.— SquirtleSprings (@SquirtleSprings) August 1, 2016
@Breaking911 I mean you can only be a Pokemon master once, but step your life up people.— Bernard Oliver (@boliver36) August 1, 2016
@12News They won't abandon their iphone or dog but a child its OK. How sad. They got the Pokemon fever.— Isaac Jones (@IJones45) August 1, 2016
Police were unimpressed, and the parents were booked for leaving the little boy home alone in the stifling Arizona heat. Sheriff Paul Babeu told the media that the temperature outside was nearly 100 degrees at the time the child was left home alone and that the parents even left the toddler without access to water when they took off to play Pokemon GO.
“Our agency and many other law enforcement agencies have been warning people about personal safety while playing this interactive Smartphone game, but we never would have imagined that parents would abandon a child to play Pokémon Go. The deputies found the child locked out of his home in 96-degree weather with no water while his parents were gone interacting with their smartphone game.”
While this recent incident of alleged Pokemon GO neglect is very disturbing, its far from the first case of the game resulting in criminal charges. As USA Today reports, Pokemon GO has resulted in some pretty serious crimes, accidents, and injuries. At one point, Pokemon GO even led a player to a dead body.
Average 'Pokémon GO' user is a 25-year-old, college-educated white woman making $90K a year: pic.twitter.com/YYs8Rx8LaE— Sharvani McDowell (@Sharrie2k) July 28, 2016
Pokemon GO has resulted in Pokemon catchers being shot and stabbed. In at least one instance, an 18-year-old was shot to death when he broke into a house to catch a Pokemon. That incident involved Jerson Lopez de Leon of Guatemala, and it was the first reported Pokemon GO fatality.
Violent robberies have also been associated with Pokemon GO. In Redding, California, a teen was stabbed during a failed robbery attempt while playing the game.
In addition to shootings and stabbings, Pokemon GO has distracted players to the point that multiple car accidents and incidents involving pedestrians being hit by cars have been attributed to the app.
Arizona parents Brent and Brianna Daley were both charged with child endangerment and child neglect and booked into the Pinal County Adult Detention Center. There has been no word as to the current custody arrangements of their 2-year-old son or when they will be formally arraigned for their alleged Pokemon GO parental neglect.
[Image via Wachiwit/Shutterstock]