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Couple charged with felony child abuse

Children left in locked vehicle taken into protective custody

OW Staff Writer | 6/14/2013, midnight

— Two adults were arraigned in the Antelope Valley Superior Court Monday for two counts of felony child abuse.

Brandi Mann, 30, and 42-year-old David Dillard were arrested for allegedly leaving a 1-year-old and a 3-year-old unattended in a locked vehicle with a partially open window in temperatures that exceeded 100 degrees.

“The car was in the parking lot of the Department of Public Social Services off of K-6,” said Miguel Ruiz of the Lancaster Sheriff’s station. Witnesses contacted deputies after the 3-year-old climbed out of the open window.

“When deputies responded, the children were sweating profusely and showing early signs of heat exhaustion,” Ruiz said.

The toddlers were treated at the scene and then taken into protective custody by the Department of Children and Family Services.

“This incident should serve as a reminder to the general public that children should never be left unattended in a vehicle,” said Ruiz. “During these coming summer months, it is even more dangerous to leave children, elderly people, and animals unattended in a vehicle even with windows partially open. The interior of vehicles can easily reach triple-digit degree temperatures in a matter of seconds. These high temperatures pose a significant danger to the health of the vehicle’s occupants.”

Anyone who witnesses these types of incidents is urged to immediately call their local sheriff’s station.