• Sweden edition
 
Ikea gave 4-year-old girl to wrong parents

Ikea gave 4-year-old girl to wrong parents

Published: 20 Jun 2011 07:46 GMT+02:00
Updated: 20 Jun 2011 07:46 GMT+02:00

"I don't understand how something like this can happen," the girl's mother, Lena Norman, told TV4 news.

Lena, her husband Rickard, and their 4-year-old daughter Wilma had taken a trip to the popular discount furniture retailer for a day of shopping.

Upon arriving at the Ikea, the Norman's checked Wilma into the store's Småland play area, a common practice among Swedish families hoping to make their shopping trip run a bit more efficiently.

"We got a stamp with a number on our wrist, and Wilma got the same number stamped on her hand," Lena told the Aftonbladet newspaper.

After making their way through the store, Lena and Rickard returned to the play area to pick up Wilma only to discover in horror that she wasn't there.

"We couldn't see her anywhere. We thought she was in the toilet, and several went to look. The staff showed me check in sheet and Wilma's name has been crossed off, like the note looks when they've checked out a child," mother Lena told TV4.

Panic-stricken, the parents widened their search beyond the Småland play area and began looking for Wilma elsewhere in the massive store.

Finally, they found Wilma standing pacing in the store's entryway, just outside the play area. Her lower lip quivering, she was clutching a drawing she had made for her parents during her time in the play area.

When she finally saw her parents, she burst into tears.

"We broke down too," Lena told Aftonbladet.

Reunited with their daughter and overjoyed, Wilma's parents attempted to learn from their daughter what happened.

"She's told us that someone said to her, 'Come Wilma, your mom and dad are here', but no one was there to pick her up," said Lena.

The parents now believe that Wilma was checked out to another family by mistake who then didn't realise that the 4-year-old had been released to them, leaving Wilma alone outside the play area.

"Just think if she had wandered off, if she hadn't been standing there waiting. No one knows either how long she was waiting there," Lena told TV4.

The store's duty manager, Veronica Eriksson told TV4 that the incident is under investigation.

"This can't happen. Something went wrong in the release of the child and we're now looking into exactly what happened," she said.

The Local/dl (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

07:59 June 20, 2011 by wenddiver
Don't worry IKEEA guaratees that either group of parents will be able to assemble the child properly.
08:10 June 20, 2011 by TheOneWhoTravels
That must have been a traumatic event for that poor little girl.

:(
09:06 June 20, 2011 by Already in use
So this means nobody checks that the kid is picked up by somebody (anybody??) with a matching number?
09:10 June 20, 2011 by Pont-y-garreg
Didn't the other family realise they had an extra child?

What a catalogue of stupidity.
09:28 June 20, 2011 by byke
The idea of leaving your children to the responsibility of unknown strangers in an ikea has always left me wondering. Even from a child's persective, how bored must a child be to want to be entertained and looked after by strangers in a room that is usually boring and dull to say the least ..... While there are a few coloured balls and the odd low grade paper and pens ..... It's hardly a place a child desires to go.

And the same goes for many adults in their stores .... It's one thing to look, but it doesn't mean I want to take that stuff home with me.
10:21 June 20, 2011 by RobinHood
Exactly the same thing happened to me. I checked in my 3 year old daughter, but IKEA gave me back a 7 year old boy. When I got home my wife realised immediately I had the wrong child. I had to go back and change him the next day. IKEA were very nice about it; they gave me a voucher for 100 SEK.
11:59 June 20, 2011 by Strongbow
Step 1. Don't name every girl "Wilma".

Seriously. Call out "Wilma" and half of the children will respond. I wish it was a joke.
13:47 June 20, 2011 by RitaPita
@ Strongbow

That's a good point. For all we know, it was just a misunderstanding and the girl walked off without being noticed.

Funny how absolutely everything gets labeled as "news" these days. I got lost in a department store when I was young too.... it didn't make The Gazette!
14:45 June 20, 2011 by Swedesmith
That's why we named our kids Moon Unit and Dwezel.
15:22 June 20, 2011 by RationalG.
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
16:25 June 20, 2011 by Kevin Harris
I lost my child in a zoo a couple of years ago. I found him by the elephants. Would the Local like a story on that too?
21:30 June 20, 2011 by spg
Who is worse. The tw@ of a reporter who thought this was news or the tw@ of an editor who let this story in!! See ye local. Going to go to a site that actually reports news!!!
18:09 June 21, 2011 by Soft Boiled
The child wasnt really missing... you need to check the instructions again
22:58 June 21, 2011 by helveeta
I saw this story all over the newspapers at Maxi the other day and first thought, why would the wrong parents accept the child they knew it wasn't theirs? Now I read the whole story and it just sounds really fishy. Also leaving your child, especially if you have only one and they are younger than 5, in the dirty small "play" area at Ikea seems really unsafe to me.
15:58 July 5, 2011 by jacquelinee
@Śwedesmith.... Since Frank Zappa is dead, you must be his wife if your kids are named "Moon Unit" and "Dwezel"
Today's headlines
Business & Money
American sales squeeze Ericsson profits
Ericsson CEO Hans Vestberg presents the third-quarter earnings report at the company's headquarters in Kista. Photo: Janerik Henriksson/TT

American sales squeeze Ericsson profits

Swedish telecoms equipment maker Ericsson reported a decline in net profit in the third quarter despite an increase in sales, boosted by business in emerging markets. READ  

Interview
'Too many concerts feel the same'
Sofar hosts secret gigs in Swedish apartments. Photo: Sofar

'Too many concerts feel the same'

Kattis Bjork founded Stockholm's secret gig scene - Sofar - a year ago. The Local caught up with her as she prepared to celebrate the project's anniversary this weekend and revealed the concept will spread to other Swedish cities in 2015. READ  

Stockholm 'sub hunt'
Sweden calls off suspect submarine search
Ships are returning to shore in Sweden. Photo: TT

Sweden calls off suspect submarine search

The core search for a suspected foreign vessel in Swedish waters has been called off. The armed forces said they remained convinced foreign underwater activity had taken place but had not identified an intruder. READ  

Business & Money
US and Japan fuel surge for Volvo trucks
Ed Carbaugh prepares to install parts on a truck engine on an assembly line at Volvo Trucks' powertrain manufacturing facility in Hagerstown, Maryland, March 2014. Photo: Patrick Semansky/AP

US and Japan fuel surge for Volvo trucks

Sweden's Volvo, the world's second-largest maker of trucks, said Friday it saw a spike in profits in the third quarter, boosted by thriving sales in the US and Japanese markets. READ  

Inspectors attacked at rogue doc’s surgery
Cigarettes and beer photo: Shutterstock

Inspectors attacked at rogue doc’s surgery

Inspectors who were sent to shut down a doctor’s surgery in Gothenburg were physically attacked and fled the premises to get help from the police. READ  

Police turn Swede’s vodka into water
A Swede loads a car with alcohol in northern Germany. File photo: Drago Prvulovic/TT

Police turn Swede’s vodka into water

Swedish police say they will pay a man 16,000 kronor ($2,200) in damages after much of the alcohol they confiscated from him was stolen, while many of the bottles they returned were filled with water. READ  

Diplomacy
US to get first female ambassador in Sweden
File photo: Athena Center for Leadership Studies

US to get first female ambassador in Sweden

The United States Embassy in Stockholm is set to get its first female ambassador after the White House announced it was nominating the Iranian-American ex-investment banker Azita Raji to take over from Mark Brzezinski. READ  

Neo-Nazi attacks
Neo-Nazis cleared of knife attack on Nigerian
Police intervene after neo-Nazis attack an anti-Nazi rally in Kärrtorp, December 2013. Photo: Hampus Andersson/TT

Neo-Nazis cleared of knife attack on Nigerian

A Stockholm court has cleared three neo-Nazis of stabbing a Nigerian man in an unprovoked attack. But two of the men will face jail after they were convicted of racial agitation at a riot. READ  

Julian Assange
Assange court ruling expected on Monday
Julian Assange at Ecuador's embassy in the UK. Photo: Anthony Devlin

Assange court ruling expected on Monday

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange can expect the next court ruling on his case to take place on Monday October 27th in Stockholm. READ  

Politics
Sweden to get EU 'Christmas present'
Sweden's Prime Minister Stefan Löfven at an EU summit in Brussels this week. Photo: TT

Sweden to get EU 'Christmas present'

Sweden is set to get 1.2 billion kronor ($168 million) back from the EU on December 1st, according to leaked EU documents which suggest that other European countries will have to make large top-up payments this year. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Lifestyle
What's On in Sweden: October 24th - 31st
Gallery
People-watching: October 22nd
Gallery
In Pictures: Prince Carl Philip and Sofia Hellqvist
Lifestyle
Eight things to love about renting a Swedish apartment
National
Vasa ship cannon blasted in Sweden
Blog updates

24 October

Editor’s blog, October 24th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hi readers, Get ready to read our weekly digest of Swedish news in less than 60 seconds. The..." READ »

 

24 October

Is darkness weather? (Blogweiser) »

"I try very hard not to talk about the weather. This has come after a decade..." READ »

 
 
 
National
Sub hunt: Day-by-day
National
Sub hunt: Stockholm islanders share their fears with The Local
Sponsored Article
The best options for oversea transfers
National
Get 20% off unique Swedish homeware
National
Dentist gives free care to Roma beggars
Business & Money
Get your own office in Gothenburg or Stockholm - free for a day
Gallery
Property of the week: Malmö
Gallery
PHOTOS: 'Foreign activity' in Swedish waters
Gallery
People-watching: October 19th
TT
Society
QUIZ: How good is your Swedish?
Lifestyle
What's on in Sweden: October 17th - 24th
Society
The nudity... and nine other things expat men notice in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 15th
Gallery
Your views: Should outdoor smoking be banned in Sweden?
Business & Money
Sweden has 'large hole' in finances
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Finding a job in Stockholm
Society
Monster salmon caught in northern Sweden
Gallery
Property of the week: Lorensberg
National
Scandinavia's child bride
National
Ebola crisis: How is Sweden preparing?
Business & Money
How Sweden is becoming a cashless society
Gallery
Stockholm Burlesque Festival 2014
National
How a little red horse became a symbol for Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 12th
Business & Money
The hottest start-ups from southern Sweden
National
What's on in Sweden: October 10th - 17th
National
Stockholm is 'best' region for well-being
Gallery
People-watching: October 8th
National
Five facts to know about Patrick Modiano
Society
My Swedish Career: A French fashionista in Sweden
Society
Swede's anti-bully Facebook tale goes viral
Society
Have you seen Sweden's viral subway cancer campaign?
National
Isis: Swedes linked to Turkish prisoner swap
National
Should Swedes be banned from buying sex abroad?
Gallery
Fredrik Reinfeldt's leaving presents
National
Five Swedish TV shows you shouldn't miss
Gallery
A tool belt, a casserole, and a book. Fredrik Reinfeldt's parliament gifts
TT
Lifestyle
Top five winter festivals in Sweden
TT
National
Sami reindeer herders win mine reprieve
Gallery
Property of the Week: Gamla Enskede
Sponsored Article
How to catch the first lobster of the year
Team SCA
Sponsored Article
All-female SCA team takes off on Volvo Ocean Race
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

991
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN