Stroudsburg, Monroe County
- A father is in trouble with the law after his four year old son was found
barefoot and alone on a busy street in Monroe County.
Mathew Hacker Junior of Stroudsburg has been charged with endangering a child and lying to police. Eyewitness News talked to many parents who were shocked to hear the news. Karen Burke of East Stroudsburg has a young daughter. She said, "She is four and I can't imagine leaving her for five minutes never mind for a whole day of work."
Police say Hacker works as a Marine Corps Recruiter in Stroud Township. He needed to take a recruit somewhere in his official car. But children are not allowed in that vehicle. So Hacker told police he left the boy at home alone in their third floor apartment.
Trish Woods of Stroudsburg reacted," That is really sad. It just lets you know the state that we are in right now."
Someone found the boy barefoot and crying on the sidewalk in front of a Chinese restaurant. They called police. The child told officers his Dad left him on the street and said he would be right back.
Nancy Miller of Stroudsburg said," There's no excuse. He could have been hit by a car. Anything could happen."
Police say Hacker originally told them a babysitter was watching the child. He said it was a friend of an acquaintance. When police couldn't find the sitter, they say Hacker admitted he left the child alone.
Daniel Martin who is visiting the area from Florida reacted," I would never leave my kids alone. Not like that. I mean I barely leave my son alone now and he's 12."
The incident happened on September 212. It took a couple of weeks for police to sort out the story and charge Hacker.
Some people said he should go to jail. Others said he needs to go to parenting school. Miller suggested," He needs to learn what to do and have a schedule of choices to make if this should happen again."
Hacker declined to comment on this story.
Police say the boy was not hurt and he is now living with his grandparents.