An Escondido Police cruiser. Photo courtesy Escondido Police

An Escondido woman faces a possible criminal charge for allegedly leaving her 3-year-old daughter in a hot car in a mall parking lot for more than an hour, leaving her hazardously overheated, authorities reported Thursday.

My-Ngan Le, 32, was arrested Wednesday afternoon as she exited Westfield North County shopping center on East Via Rancho Parkway, according to Escondido police.

A short time earlier, officers had been sent to the mall on a report that a toddler was strapped in a child seat inside a parked and locked vehicle there, Sgt. Kevin Toth said.

Concerned about the welfare of the girl, who was flushed, crying and sweating profusely, the patrol personnel forced entry and removed her. Medics determined that the youngster’s pulse was “extremely elevated” and rushed her to Palomar Medical Center, Toth said.

Physicians evaluated and treated the girl before releasing her to a relative.

“Thankfully, the child was deemed to be in good health,” the sergeant said.

Le was booked into Vista Detention Center on suspicion of felony child endangerment. She was released on bond late Wednesday evening.

Though the outdoor temperature was in the low 70s at the time of the incident, it was “significantly” warmer inside Le’s car, according to Toth.

“The Escondido Police Department would like to remind the public that leaving children unattended in vehicles is extremely dangerous,” he said. “However short an errand may be, it is not worth the potential danger to a child’s health to leave them unattended inside a vehicle.”

City News Service

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