A Smyrna woman is in police custody after allegedly leaving her 16-month-old daughter locked in a car in a mall parking lot for two and a half hours, officials said Thursday morning.
Dao Truc Le, 22, was arrested and charged with cruelty to a child in the first degree, the Cobb County Police Department said in a statement.
Security at Town Center mall in Kennesaw found the child shortly before 7:30 p.m. Wednesday. The girl was buckled in her car seat, and the windows were all rolled up, police said.
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The car was hot and the child was drenched in sweat by the time police arrived, they said. Wednesday saw temperatures reach the low 90s in the afternoon, and remain in the high 80s into the afternoon, according to the National Weather Service.
The girl was taken to the hospital for treatment, police said.
Officials believe Le left her daughter in the car while she went inside the mall to work, according to the statement from police.
The Cobb County Police Department’s Crimes Against Children/Special Victims Unit is investigating the case.
“The Cobb County Police Department would like to remind everyone the importance of not leaving children or animals unattended in vehicles for any period of time,” police said.
Temperatures, according to the statement, “can escalate extremely quickly, creating a very dangerous situation for anyone inside.”
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