PORTALES, N.M. — Authorities in Portales say two in-home day care workers who are mother and daughter were arrested on suspicion of child abuse after two young children were left in a hot car. One child is dead and the other was clinging to life Wednesday in a Lubbock hospital.
Police say responding officers found the children not breathing Tuesday afternoon.
Deputy District Attorney Brian Stover says police believe the two children were left in the vehicle after one of the workers returned from taking six children to a park.
Neighboring Clovis’ high Tuesday was 95 degrees.
Police say 67-year-old Mary E. Taylor and 31-year-old Sandi Taylor were arrested and jailed on suspicion of child abuse and jailed pending court appearances. It’s not immediately known if they have attorneys.
Family members said Maliyah Jones, 22 months, died at Roosevelt General Hospital, according to Eastern New Mexico News.
The other child, identified in court records as Aubrianna Loya, under the age of 3, was transferred to University Medical Center in Lubbock. A UMC spokesman on Wednesday confirmed the child, age 23 months, was in critical condition.
“We don’t know if she’ll make it or not,” Assistant District Attorney Brian Stover said late Tuesday night.
A Portales police news release said officers responded to the in-home daycare at 1408 S. Ave. C at 3:25 p.m. Tuesday for a report of two children having seizures. They found two children not breathing and began lifesaving attempts.
Stover said police believe Sandi Taylor took six children to a local park, while Mary Taylor stayed at the home with four other children. When Sandi Taylor returned to the Taylor Tots daycare, she took four children inside and left two in the vehicle.
“The worker was intending to go back and get (the two left behind), but she got distracted by something — she doesn’t know what — and then began to fill out some paperwork,” Stover said. “They put the children down for naps and did not notice the two missing at the time. Later, they realized it and found the children and began to attempt lifesaving procedures and called 911.”