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Missing Neb. boy found in stuffed animal machine

Missing Neb. Boy Found In Stuffed Animal Claw Machine


A 3-year-old Nebraska boy is now safe after somehow crawling his way into a stuffed animal claw machine at a bowling alley across the street from his family's apartment Monday night. WOWT reports the boy's 24-year-old mother called police, telling them her son got out of an unlocked door in their Lincoln apartment while she was in the bathroom. Somehow he got to the bowling alley.

KMTV points out 3-year-old Kael Ireland was able to somehow make his way through the machine's small opening and crawl up inside to play with some of the toys.

Some witnesses got cellphone video before the machine's vendor was able to get the key to free the boy. The vendor told KOLN it's difficult for kids to pull off what Kael was able to do Monday night.

"The cranes are built so that kids can't get in there and steal items. ... He wasn't hurt, and the parents were glad we got him out of there."

This isn't the first time this has happened. Back in August, this video showed a crowd of people gathering around the machine as a young boy was stuck inside. Employees at the bowling alley quickly unlocked the door and let the boy out.

And in 2012, The Huffington Post reported a 3-year-old boy in Australia wound up in a vending machine and started handing out stuffed animals to strangers nearby. He also made it out safely.

Kael was not hurt in Monday's incident. The vendor gave him a stuffed animal from the machine to take home. As for Kael's mother, police say she won't be cited because they don't suspect neglect in this case.

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thmps2da April 16 2014 at 3:47 PM

Sounds like a very gifted child!
Innovative, and daring.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
2 replies
kwikrdrvr thmps2da April 16 2014 at 4:31 PM

All the more reason to keep an eye on the child.

Flag Reply +2 rate up
Bev thmps2da April 16 2014 at 5:05 PM

Kid just knew that he wanted the toys. At that age, he was too young to rationialize his actions. How about the person responsible for his safety and welfare? Maybe she also had the brain of a three year old.

Flag Reply 0 rate up
papabudlight April 16 2014 at 8:26 PM

That boy gets what he want's. He will make a great polititian.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
Chris Claymont April 16 2014 at 8:17 PM

lol, he was dreaming about those toys since the last time he was at the bowling ally.. Glad he is ok, safer locked in there than roaming the street I suppose.

Flag Reply +2 rate up
Connie April 16 2014 at 7:43 PM

Since it turned out well..I have to say I got a laugh out of this...he is so darn cute in there! I am glad he got a toy out of it anyway.

Now for the serious side..I have a few issues. First, these machines need some serious changes (they cited at least 3 other times this has happened) Second, when you are alone with a 3 year old, all windows and doors should be locked. Third, when you are alone with a 3 year old, you don't have the luxury of privacy in the bathroom..leave the door open so you can see him! Before any moms blast me for that comment, consider whether you would rather lose some privacy or walk out of your bathroom to find your child missing!

Thank God Kael had a Guardian Angel watching over him and he is safe. You got lucky mom...now learn a lesson from it!

Flag Reply +7 rate up
2 replies
lilnomadic1 Connie April 16 2014 at 7:54 PM

I always made fun of my mom because she always left the bathroom door opened,after having kids myself I learned as a mom you just got used to leaving it open to hear/see the munchkins now as teens they get on me for my habit of leaving the door open.

Flag Reply +7 rate up
Carolyn Connie April 16 2014 at 9:44 PM

I have even a better solution - Lock the dang door to the house and make sure the lock it high enough that the child cannot reach it - both for the safety of the child not getting out - but to prevent surprise visitors that could come in and snatch the child or hurt the mom - ot whatever - Thank good ness this turned out happy.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
shindogdiggity88 April 16 2014 at 12:28 PM

Did he find Buzz and Woody in there?

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2 replies
douttfire shindogdiggity88 April 16 2014 at 12:48 PM

I bet he was looking!

Flag Reply +2 rate up
hollell2 shindogdiggity88 April 16 2014 at 12:52 PM

I thought of toy story right away...little green martians :)

Flag Reply +2 rate up
riverwishin April 16 2014 at 7:22 PM

I guess there is one thing we know for sure...he wanted that stuffed animal. In my opinion since the child got past all "the safeguards" put in place to have this not happen should win him the prize!

Flag Reply +1 rate up
Johnny April 16 2014 at 6:56 PM

saftey locks for the windows, keylock/combination lock for the screen door/door. if your in an apartment, try a half door, for temporary use if you have to take a shower or not watch the kids for a brief moment. Alarms are always effective. latches that are difficult to find (vertical latches) also are very helpful. Both my kids are autistic, and always elope at school, but never have they escaped our house. Of course its the parents fault. At the very minimum, they need education classes on how to watch their kids better. If the schools lost the kids, lawsuit. Parents loses the kids, and nothing happens?

Flag Reply +9 rate up
rlmcanoe April 16 2014 at 6:50 PM

glad the boy is safe, but come on mom, lock the door to the apartment while you are in the bathroom. he got out, it could have been worse, someone could have come in.

Flag Reply +8 rate up
janka51 April 16 2014 at 6:37 PM

these machines rob people to stupid to know they can't get the claw to grasp anything and should be against the law

Flag Reply +4 rate up
1 reply
lilnomadic1 janka51 April 16 2014 at 7:52 PM

Actually there are some people who can win at them a lot my sister always could get the darn prize , I managed once. They should not be outlawed if your willing to take the gamble then its on you.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
lneslusan April 16 2014 at 6:13 PM

I really thi nk he is too heavey for that crane..it might take more than 50cents to get him. hehe

Flag Reply +3 rate up
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