Raise your hand if you think the law should go easy on “mother of the year” candidate Abbie Maldonado. Yes, Maldonado committed the unconscionable crime of leaving her 3-year-old alone in her car. But she also left her loaded handgun inside the car so that the toddler could shoot his way out if need be — which he did.
All kidding aside, this has got to be the most unfit mother in the history of the planet. To her credit (her infinitesimally small credit), Maldonado planned on being away from the child long enough to pick her other child at an elementary school. What is more, she left the rear passenger door propped open so the child wouldn’t suffocate (even though this act also made him prey to unprincipled child collectors, of which there are sadly many.
But the biggest head scratcher has got to be the loaded gun.
According to CBS affiliate WREG:
Maldonado only realized what had happened when she walked back to her car and heard broken glass crunch under her feet. Deputies said she thought someone might have vandalized her car, but then she noticed the handgun that she left in the side door pocket sitting on her front seat. After checking the child for injuries, she went inside the school to report what happened, the sheriff’s office said.
Deputies responded around 3:45 p.m. and arrested Maldonado on a felony charge of child neglect. Her boyfriend drove to the school to pick up the children.
The school released a statement warning parents of the need for vigilance:
This is a reminder that accidents do happen and we encourage everyone to exercise caution and extra responsibility especially on school grounds where so many children are present. We encourage parents to never leave children unattended in a vehicle. Any suspected violation of Florida gun statutes on school property will be immediately reported by Good Shepherd Academy to (the) Volusia [Florida] County Sheriff’s Office.
It is frankly a sad commentary that parents need to be reminded not to leave their children alone in a car, with or without a loaded handgun.