Melissa Smith has seen a pregnant mother and her son panhandling at a shopping center in Chula Vista, California, almost every weekend for a couple of months now. While she was already outraged that the woman was using her child for monetary gain, it was what she saw recently that really made her want to put an end to it.
As Smith was passing by the woman who was begging for change, she saw her jump into a Mercedes-Benz with a man who often accompanies her and her son on weekends.
Smith decided to follow the Benz and watched as the man parked the car at a McDonald's and waited as the woman and her son begged at the new location. After collecting money for five minutes, the pregnant woman and her son jumped back into the car and drove off again.
The woman noticed Smith taking pictures of her and the car and began to yell at her. KGTV ran the plate and found that the vehicle was registered to someone who lived at an apartment complex that costs $2,500 a month.
At the rate this woman was begging, it’s very possible she was able to afford the rent with the money she took from others. "Lots of people gave them money,” Smith said. “Probably five people in five minutes gave them money."
KGTV is trying to track the woman who has recently moved from the apartment complex, according to records they found while running the plates. Smith wants the woman’s identity to be known to the community so they stop enabling her behavior and bad parenting by giving her money.
Smith’s main concern is the child and she commented, "He's running in a parking lot instead of a park. What kind of parent uses their child for monetary gain?"