Police say babysitter left 5-year-old behind

FORT SUMNER, N.M. (KRQE) – A little girl abandoned at a New Mexico gas station sparked a frantic search for her parents, but they’re not the ones who left her.

The De Baca County Sheriff’s Department has taken that little girl’s babysitter into custody and are questioning her right now.

That little girl was left behind at an Allsups in Fort Sumner in the heart of town.

Employees said she waited and waited for someone to come get her and pay for a candy bar, but no one ever showed.

She is just 5 years old and came to the Allsups with her babysitter at around 4 p.m. Saturday, but then workers noticed something wasn’t right. The parking lot was empty and the little girl was still inside.

The De Baca County Sheriff’s Department then responded and deputies able to talk to the girl.

She told them she was camping and was able to tell deputies what the car she was in looked like.

More than four hours later, that babysitter who’s in her late 30s or early 40s was spotted at Lake Sumner by park rangers.

KRQE News 13 talked to an employee who was working when this happened. She said the little girl was dirty, scared and crying when employees took her across the street to the Family Dollar and bought her new clothes. The woman said the whole thing was heartbreaking.

“It’s awful and experience I don’t ever want to experience again,” said Lisa Garza, a woman who helped the girl.

The babysitter was questioned Saturday night. The little girl’s parents drove up from Portales to be reunited with the girl..

Deputies say there were other children with the babysitter when she left the little girl behind at the gas station. When the woman was approached, she said she was shocked the girl was missing.

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