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Hanford Child Left in Hot Car

A Hanford mother is in jail after allegedly leaving her 11-month-old son in a hot car while she shopped.
A Hanford mother is in jail after allegedly leaving her 11-month-old son in a hot car while she shopped.

The near tragedy happened at the Foods Co. parking lot in Hanford on the 1800 Block of West Lacey Blvd.

Police say the baby was in the car about eight minutes and was already showing signs of heat stroke.

The child's mother Brittany Hoge is being charged with felony willful cruelty of a child.

"It was approximately 102 degrees outside. The interior of the car was another 10 to 15 degrees hotter. Another 5 to 10 minutes could have been severely worse for the child," Sgt. Justin Vallan with Handford Police said.

Two men were putting their groceries away in the Food Co parking lot Wednesday evening when they heard a baby screaming. The windows in the car were up and the child was alone in the hot car. Police say the men were about to break the window to get the baby out when they realized one car door was open.

"They got the baby out. They told us that the baby was beat red, was sweating profusely and was crying. They took the baby under a shade tree and a short time later the mother of the child, Brittany Hogue, had come out of the shopping center," Vallan said.

Police say Hogue admitted she forgot her baby in the car while she was shopping.

"I don't know how she left her baby in the car in the first place. When I get off that's the first thing I do is take out my daughter," Christpher Guzman, a Hanford resident said.

Guzman cannot believe a parent in Hanford would leave their baby in the car. Knowing how high temperatures can soar in the summer.

"It depends on the circumstance but there is really no excuse for leaving your baby in the car," Guzman said.

Police say the baby was taken to the hospital.

Using surveillance video they were able to determine the baby was in the car for about eight minutes and Hogue didn't not return for another eight minutes.

As Hanford police searched her car they found marijuana.

"Miss Hogue also admitted to the officers that she had smoked marijuana earlier that day. It's unknown at this time that the amount of marijuana that she smoked impaired her judgement and made her forget that she even had the child in the vehicle," Vallan said.

Police say the baby is now with his father and is doing okay. They say anyone who sees a child in a parked car alone should not be afraid to call police and take measures to get the child out like the two men did in this case.

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