DOCUMENT: Florida, Stupid, Crime

Cops: Walmart Shoplifters Left Kids In Vehicle

Parents never mentioned children left in locked car


View Document

Kids Left Behind

JANUARY 6--After getting arrested last night for shoplifting at Walmart, a Florida couple failed to mention that their three young children were alone in a locked car in the store’s parking lot, where the youngsters were discovered seven hours after the pair’s jailing.

According to investigators, Tosheba Hope, 30, and Gerald Moultrie, 24, drove last night to a Walmart in Lauderdale Lakes. They were accompanied by Hope’s three children (ages two, five, and seven). Moultrie is the father of Hope's youngest child.

Around 7 PM, Hope and Moultrie, pictured above, were detained after they allegedly sought to walk out of the retailer with $660 worth of tools and automotive accessories, according to a police report. The couple was subsequently arrested by Broward Sheriff’s Office deputies and charged with grand theft, a felony.

After Hope and Moultrie were booked into the county jail, seven hours passed before investigators learned that their three children had been abandoned in the parking lot (Walmart workers spotted the minors and called 911).

Deputies located the minors around 2 AM and turned them over to child welfare officials. While distressed, the children were unharmed.

In addition to the felony theft rap, the couple is also expected to face child neglect charges. According to court records, Moultrie’s rap sheet includes previous arrests for marijuana possession and driving without a license. During a court appearance this morning, Hope told a judge that she is “probably pregnant” with her fourth child.