Portland, Oregon, nanny Kristin Jones, 23, is accused of leaving two young kids in a car on a 90-degree day. Police allege she left the kids in the car so she could get a tanning session in.
Police were called to the car after a concerned witness saw the children screaming inside. Portland Police officer Rian Hamby broke into the car and rescued the children. According to Hamby, the children were “soaked with sweat” when he pulled them out. Hamby wrote in his police report that he “felt heat radiating from the child through his bullet proof vest.”
Police confirm that it was 90 degrees on the day the children were left in the car, and none of the vehicle’s windows was open.
Jones initially lied when confronted by police and claimed she left the children in the car with their mother. She later recanted that statement and said she lied out of fear.
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Jones is charged with first-degree criminal mistreatment, recklessly endangering another person and second-degree child neglect. She pleaded not guilty to all charges.
Just two weeks ago, 22-month-old Cooper Harris died after being left in a hot car by his parents. According to WebMD, more than 600 children have died in hot cars since 1990.
Nathan Allen, an emergency medicine doctor at the University of Chicago, says it’s never acceptable to leave children in cars alone.
“There is no safe amount of time to leave children alone in the car,” Allen says. “Kids are more susceptible and at higher risk for heat-related illness and injury than adults because their bodies make more heat relative to their size and their abilities to cool through sweating are not as developed as adults.”