Dad gambles while tot left in idling car

Posted: June 17, 2010

Time flies when you're having fun.

But it probably wasn't much fun for a 15-month-old child strapped in a locked car outside the Parx Casino, in Bensalem. His father was inside gambling for more than an hour, police said.

Donald Waige, 59, told police that he had intended to stop into the casino for only 10 minutes to collect a $10 credit on his player's card when he left his little boy in the car Tuesday afternoon.

Waige, of Courtland Street near G Street, in Philadelphia's Feltonville section, told Bensalem police that he left the car running with the air conditioner on and that the child was strapped into his car seat, asleep.

"Waige stated he did not realize he was in the casino for over an hour," a police statement said.

Police were called about 5:30 p.m., summoned by casino personnel after someone alerted them about a child left alone in a vehicle.

Waige was charged with child endangerment and sent to the Bucks County Prison in lieu of $15,000 bail. A relative said Waige had three older children and was not currently married but wouldn't give any further details.

Waige was arrested as he was walking to his car, said Bensalem Police Sgt. Andrew Aninsman. Police, who freed the boy, had checked the vehicle's ownership and were entering the casino to search for Waige when he came out, Aninsman said.

"We know he was in there for an hour and 20 minutes," Aninsman said of Waige. Although Waige told police that the boy was asleep, the child was crying when police found him.

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