Cops: Foster Mom Left Toddler in Hot Car

Monique Williams was arrested yesterday after incident at Florida Publix

By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff

Posted Jul 11, 2014 9:23 AM CDT

(Newser) – The wave of kids-in-hot-cars stories continues: A Florida foster mom was arrested on child neglect charges after police say she left a 15-month-old in a hot car for 20 minutes yesterday while she shopped. An employee of Apopka's Publix grocery store saw the boy in the car, with the windows up, and a customer alerted police, WKMG reports. "The child's hair was wet from sweat and he was warm to the touch, but otherwise found to be in good health," an officer told the Orlando Sentinel, adding it was 90 degrees outside at the time. Monique Williams' explanation: The child was "very sick" with pinkeye "and just a mistake was made," the 53-year-old tells WFTV, adding she ran inside to buy the boy wipes and milk.

The toddler is now with the Florida Department of Children and Families, along with Williams' three other foster children who were at a supervised visit during the incident. And though police say "initially, she wasn't very remorseful about leaving the child," Williams did apologize before bonding out of jail this morning. She also said, however, she takes issue with how long police say she was in the store. "I ran in and ran out," but "I don't have a watch," she said. Police say surveillance video indicates it was about 20 minutes. Williams passed a background check and had a clean record with the DCF, which now plans to revoke her license as a foster parent. Williams, however, said she'd give up that license voluntarily.

Monique Williams was arrested yesterday after incident at Florida Publix.
Monique Williams was arrested yesterday after incident at Florida Publix.   (AP Photo/Scott Iskowitz)
Stock photo of a car interior.
Stock photo of a car interior.   (Shutterstock)
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