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News Maryland Anne Arundel County Glen Burnie

Mother who left child at casino makes bail

A Baltimore woman accused of leaving her 4-year-old daughter alone in a vehicle for 8 1/2 while she was inside Maryland Live casino has posted bail, according to court records.

Alicia D. Brown, 24, was arrested at the casino on New Year's Eve and charged with confining an unattended child, second-degree child abuse and neglect of a minor.

According to Anne Arundel County police, Brown left her child alone in a white 2013 GM Terrain SUV in a parking garage at the Hanover casino.

When a security guard saw the little girl crying in the SUV at 6:31 p.m., she asked if she was OK. The girl responded, "No," according to the police report. When the girl was asked who she was with, she said her mother had told her that she'd be right back.

The security officer put the girl in a security vehicle to keep her warm and discovered the girl had wet herself, according to a police report. Blankets were covering the SUV's rear windows, police said.

Brown showed up about 30 minutes later and initially claimed her 17-year-old cousin was supposed to watch the girl but "recanted her statement after I pointed out the fact that there were several security cameras in the garage saying she was there alone with" the girl, a police officer wrote in the arrest report.

Police said video footage showed Brown left the SUV at 10 a.m. The police report did not indicate what Brown was doing inside the casino.

The girl was taken to Baltimore Washington Medical Center in Glen Burnie for treatment, and social services officials later allowed her to go home with her grandmother.

Brown was arrested and a court commissioner placed her under $150,000 bond at the Jennifer Road Detention Center in Annapolis. She was released Wednesday. An attorney was not listed in court records, and a cellphone number for Brown was disconnected. The grandmother declined to comment.

Officials at Maryland Live declined to answer questions about the incident or the casino's efforts to prevent children from being left alone in cars.

The casino's general manager, Rob Norton, issued a statement saying, "Incidents of parental neglect and lack of personal responsibility are disturbing. We are thankful that our security team was able to intervene and get the appropriate authorities involved and that we found the child unharmed."

Children were found in vehicles at least two other times at Maryland Live in 2013, according to state regulators. Maryland Live reported to the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Commission that children were found in vehicles there in May and in October.

In addition, a child was found alone in a vehicle in June at Hollywood Casino in Perryville, and two children were found in vehicles in August at the Casino at Ocean Downs in Berlin, according to Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Commission reports.

Incidents of unattended children are among cases tracked by casino regulators on a monthly basis, along with underage gamblers, fights, thefts and other issues. December's casino incidents have not yet been reported to regulators.

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Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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