CENTRAL ISLIP, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A Long Island father accused of leaving his child in a hot, locked car while he went shopping faced a judge Thursday.
Juan Pablo Aguilar Varela was ordered by a judge to refrain from operating a motor vehicle with a child in the car for a period of one year, WCBS 880’s Long Island Bureau Chief Mike Xirinachs reported.
The judge set his bail at $2,500.
The 32-year-old Mount Sinai man will return to court next month on child endangerment charges, Xirinachs reported.
The sweating, crying girl, who had been left alone for approximately 15 minutes Wednesday afternoon, was rescued by a passerby who called police.
Around 2 p.m., police responded to a report of a child in a Mercedes Benz at Selden Plaza on Route 25 on one of the hottest days of the year. The woman also flagged down Dave Panebianco, 3rd assistant fire chief with the Selden Fire Department.
“I was driving through the parking lot, and I got waved down by a female,” Panebianco told WCBS 880. “And pulled up to her. She asked me if I was here for the child stuck in the car. I was like, ‘OK, I’m not sure what you’re talking about, but what do you have?’”
The girl was sleeping in the backseat, authorities said. The car was not running, and the windows were rolled down approximately a half-inch, police said.
“I could see a little girl in the backseat, covered by what looked to be like a sunvisor of some sort that you kind of put in the front window,” Panebianco said. “And I could see that she was breathing. And I could also see that she was kind of covered in sweat.”
Other members of the Selden Fire Department responded and were able to unlock one of the doors.
Panebianco said he brought the girl into his air-conditioned vehicle and began treating her for a heat emergency. She was then transported to Stony Brook University Hospital for examination.
Police found Varela inside the TJ Maxx department store. He was arrested and charged with endangering the welfare of a child.
Varela said nothing at his court appearance and his attorney refused to comment.
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