06272017Headline:

Denver, Colorado

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Linda Chalat
Linda Chalat
Attorney • (866) 735-1102 Ext 366

Child Left in Locked Car, Judge Not Charged

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Denver County Judge Mary Celeste, cited with breaking a city ordinance for leaving her granddaughter in a car while she shopped, has a chance to have her case dismissed in six months. Though these cases typically result in child endangerment or abuse charges, Celeste was never charged with any criminal wrongdoing. Instead, she was cited under a Denver city ordinance with committing wrongs to minors.

The Denver County Court judge entered into an agreement with a special prosecutor for a deferred six-month prosecution. Her case will be dismissed in six months if Celeste stays out of trouble.

Authorities accused Celeste of leaving her 6-year-old granddaughter in a locked car in late July on a day with temperatures above 90 degrees. An attorney for Celeste previously said there was water in the car and a fan was running.

Most folks know you never leave a pet, much less a child, in a locked car, especially on hot days. In 2010, a record number of deaths occurred for children left in hot cars – 49 deaths. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration warns that ‘a locked car sitting in the summer sun quickly turns into an oven, temperatures can climb from 78 degrees to 100 degrees in just three minutes, to 125 degrees in 6-8 minutes.

It certainly contributes to the lack of faith many people have in our justice system when cases such as these seem to be blatant favoritism.