Twin babies found
dead in car in the Bronx, police say father forgot about them when he left
Twin year-old siblings died Friday inside a
sweltering hot car in the Bronx after their father went to work, forgetting
they were in the back seat, authorities said.
The brother and sister
spent eight hours strapped in car seats in their father Honda’s Accord --
from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
When the 37-year-old father left his job at the
VA Medical Center, in Kingsbridge, he drove a short distance -- then
realized what he had done. He jumped out of the car at Kingsbridge Terrace
and W. Kingsbridge Road and screamed for help before dialing 911.
the babies, foam coming from their mouths, were already dead.
Detectives are interviewing the father at the 50th Precinct. It was not
clear if he will be charged.
babies found dead and ‘foaming at the mouth’ in back of Bronx car
Twin 1-year-old babies were found dead and foaming at the mouths in the
back of a car in The Bronx on Friday — after being left in the hot vehicle
for eight hours by their father, who told cops he had forgotten they were
there, law-enforcement sources told The Post.
The father, Juan
Rodriguez, 39, of Rockland County, was charged early Saturday with two
counts of manslaughter and two counts of criminally negligent homicide.
It was 8 a.m. when Rodriguez left daughter Mariza and son Phoenix in the
back seat of his Honda Accord, which he parked at the James J. Peters VA
Hospital in Kingsbridge where he works as a social worker, police said.
He returned to the car at 4 p.m. — and realized the babies were inside
only after he had begun driving away, police said.
Someone other than
the father called the police after witnessing the man screaming on the side
of the road at Kingsbridge Terrace and Kingsbridge Road, police said.
EMS arrived to find the babies not breathing, their mouths covered in
foam, sources told The Post.
The children’s mother was talking to
police Friday night at the 52nd Precinct station house, where her husband
was being held.
The deaths shocked the children’s neighbors in the
Rockland County hamlet of New City.
The family had just celebrated
the twins’ first birthday with a large backyard party, said one next-door
neighbor who asked not to be identified by name.
“I’ve never seen
them outside unattended,” the neighbor said of the twins and their older
brother, who is 4. He described the parents as loving and attentive.
“Very good parents,” he said.
“They were July babies. It was just
this month they had a big party — a bouncy house, the whole thing.”
Another neighbor expressed his sympathy for the father, asking, “How do you
live your life after something like this?”
“He would never hurt his
children,” the neighbor added. “He’s a very loving father … it’s beyond
crazy. That’s a parent’s worst nightmare, it really is.”
had dropped off the couple’s older child in Yonkers earlier on Friday,
according to a law-enforcement source, who said that child is OK.
father has two older children from a previous marriage who also live at the
home, another neighbor said.
“It’s shocking,” said a Bronx man who
gave his name as Leonard P., 27, near the 52nd Precinct station house. “I
know there are two little angels in heaven tonight. I hope they get a
“But the dad? Lock his ass up.”
devastated neighbors built a makeshift memorial of votive candles across the
street from where the father pulled over the car and fell apart.
outdoor temperature had risen into the high 80s on Friday.
an outdoor temperature of only 61 degrees can cause fatal conditions inside
a closed car, where the temperature can reach more than 105 in just an hour,
according to Consumer Reports.
An average of 38 children die annually
in the US after being left in cars.
Last year, a record-high 52
children died in hot cars, according to the National Safety Council.