Man Leaves 5-year-old Granddaughter Alone in Desert with Loaded Gun, Tells Her to 'Shoot Bad Guys'
This gentleman ^^^ is facing child abuse and endangerment charges after police say he left his 5-year-old granddaughter alone in the desert with only a loaded and ready-to-fire .45-caliber handgun and told her "shoot any bad guys." Paul Armand Rater, 53, of Buckeye, Arizona, took his granddaughter for a ride in his new pickup early Sunday afternoon in the desert outside Buckeye (about 30 miles from Phoenix) but it got stuck. The girl was reported missing four hours later. Paul says he left the girl under a tree with the pistol when she couldn't walk anymore. He couldn't call for help because he had left his cell phone at home. "I got stuck. I got buried and I couldn't get out," he says. "So, I walk with my granddaughter, ... dammit. Alright. So, I walk with my granddaughter. She was crying, pissing and moaning cause she got tired. She wanted to take a nap and so I put her under a shade tree. I put my gun down because I didn’t want to carry it." He says he eventually circled back looking for the girl, but he became thirsty. He left the desert and went to a bar, had a drink, had a hamburger, according to police. He also didn’t bother to tell anyone there was a 5-year-old child missing in the desert. "Only reason why I got something to eat was I hadn’t eaten in six hours. I drank two sodas and then I started drinking beer because I don’t like soda, so, I was dehydrated," Paul says. Five hours later, a search crew located the girl after hearing a small voice respond to people calling her name. The child, who was unharmed, was holding the firearm when she was found. It was fully loaded, with one round in the chamber and the hammer locked back, according to a probable-cause statement.
Here's Paul explaining to a judge what happened, as he remembers it.
source: Arizona Republic