A bikini-clad mother who was found passed out at her apartment complex while her 6-year-old daughter played unsupervised at a nearby playground was arrested on a child neglect charge last Wednesday, a Maitland police report states.
According to the report, Maitland police responded to the Grand Reserve Apartments about 6:30 p.m., after a neighbor spotted the girl playing alone. The girl's mother Karen Gunderlach, 33, was found on a second-floor breezeway.
Officers woke Gunderlach and reported the "strong odor of an alcoholic beverage." They said her speech was "slurred to the point where it was difficult to understand her." When asked the date and time, she reportedly said it was 7 a.m. Thursday.
Gunderlach told police her daughter was with a baby sitter. A half-empty 12-pack of Miller Lite was found nearby, as were a beach towel and sandals. Gunderlach initially denied they were hers, but later said they might be, the report says.
Gunderlach was arrested on a charge of child neglect and booked into the Orange County Jail. The Florida Department of Children and Families was called in, and the 6-year-old's uncle came to take custody of the girl, the police report says.
Reached by phone Friday, Gunderlach handed the call off to a man who said he was representing her. He said the child was "never not being supervised" by a baby sitter and "was never in any danger at all."
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