Kid in Claw Machine: Missing Boy Found in Bowling Alley Arcade (Video)

Friday, 18 Apr 2014 09:31 AM

By Morgan Chilson

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A missing Nebraska kid was found safe inside a toy claw machine, happily playing with stuffed animals at a nearby bowling alley.

The 3-year-old boy’s mother, who has not been identified and will not be charged, called police Monday to report her son missing and said he disappeared while she was in the bathroom, KUSA reported.

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While searching near the boy’s home, a bystander told police they saw a boy at Madsen Bowling & Billiards, and when police went there, they found the young child inside the toy claw machine.

Randy Lee, who works at the bowling alley, told ABC’s "Good Morning America" that employees had actually discovered the child in the machine and called police.

The company that operated the vending machine was called and opened it to let the boy out.

"He was oblivious to everybody standing outside the machine watching him," Lee told ABC. "You could just see him in there playing with the stuffed animals and not paying attention to what's going on outside at all, and that was even after the police officers got there too."

Lee said the boy had to have squeezed in through the chute where the toys drop out when someone wins. The vending machine owner gave the boy a stuffed animal, which "GMA" hosts joked might have been rewarding bad behavior.

The story of the child’s quest for a stuffed animal numerous comments about how easily kids can wander off.

“I can certainly identify with the mother who had a hard time keeping track of her son,” wrote one mother. “Our son, who is still alive, thankfully, and now 18, just had incredible curiosity, intelligence, and absolutely no fear of being out of his mother's sight, even at the very young age.

Another online video of a child crawling in through just such a door on a toy claw machine went viral recently.

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