MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A 47-year-old Burnsville man was charged with neglect of a child after police say he left his 4-year-old daughter at home so he could go to the bar.
Authorities said they were dispatched to Richard Donald Moore’s residence around 12:21 a.m. on July 19, after his daughter ran over to the neighbor’s house and told the neighbor she couldn’t find her dad.
The neighbor told police the girl was wearing her pajamas and holding a blanket when she came to his home. He said she said she woke up because she had a bad dream and couldn’t find her dad.
The neighbor said he waited an hour to call police, thinking the child’s dad might be bringing a babysitter home or something but once a considerable amount of time went by, he contacted authorities.
Police discovered the child’s mother was away from the home, traveling for work, and the child’s father was supposed to be watching her. The mother told police she wasn’t sure where he could be but that he usually hangs out at two different local bars. She said she tried calling him multiple times but couldn’t reach him.
Police obtained Moore’s license plate number and searched local bar parking lots for his vehicle. They found him on the patio of a local bar, with a woman, who was not the child’s mother.
Moore told police he had been there since midnight, but the woman he was with said he picked her up around 10 p.m.
Moore admitted to police that he knew his daughter was home alone.
A relative of the child picked her up from the neighbor’s home and kept her in their custody until the child’s mother was able to fly back home.
Moore has been charged with one count of neglect of a child. If convicted, he could face up to a year in prison and/or up to $3,000 in fines.