Riverton woman charged for leaving baby unattended in car
A Riverton mother is facing a felony charge after she admitted to "always" leaving her baby boy in the car while she shops.
A customer at the West Jordan Walmart saw the 36-year-old woman's son in an Oldsmobile Intrigue on Sept. 19, according to police Sgt. Joe Monson. The baby, who is 21 months old, had been in the car for at least 30 minutes, court documents add.
Monson said the car doors were locked and the air conditioning was running.
After police arrived, they questioned the woman and she admitted she always left the baby in the car while she shops. Police arrested the woman and contacted the baby's father, who picked him up.
Prosecutors charged the woman Friday with one count of child abuse, a third-degree felony.
Monson said the temperature at the time of the incident was 66 degrees. However, he added that a car can still get extremely hot inside even in cooler weather.
"When a car is sealed up and air can't move it can get pretty toasty in there," he said.
The boy's age made the situation even more dangerous because "a 1-year-old is pretty much defenseless," according to Monson.
Monson praised the people who reported the situation to police. The woman has no prior criminal record.