Police responded after a 911 caller reported that a toddler was alone in a 2010 Toyota Prius in the parking lot of the Bed Bath and Beyond at 340 Walt Whitman Road.
An officer was attempting to gain access to the vehicle, which was locked, when Stella Wu, the child’s mother, exited the store and unlocked the Toyota.
“Our concern is that the child was left alone,” Sgt. Joseph Retivo told WCBS 880 reporter Sophia Hall. “From what the officer saw, the child wasn’t in bad condition. It was 39 degrees. We were concerned about the kid being left in the car.”
The 28-year-old Wu was arrested and charged with endangering the welfare of a child.
Retivo says she told the officers something about just jumping in to return an item.
“What’s to prevent someone from seeing the kid in their, trying to get into the car, breaking a window, and pulling the kid out of there?” said Retivo.
She will be held overnight at the Fourth Precinct and arraigned at First District Court in Central Islip on Friday.
The child was released to family.