Draper police: Woman charged after leaving 4-year-old son in hot car as punishment

Jesica Lee Brown. Photo: Salt Lake County

DRAPER, Utah, July 5, 2019 (Gephardt Daily) — A Utah woman was booked into jail after police say she shut her 4-year-old son in a hot car to punish him.

The incident was reported to Draper police at about 9 p.m. Tuesday, a probable cause statement says.

“I was dispatched to a welfare check at Draper City Park,” the responding officer wrote. “Dispatch advised that a complainant was calling in to report that a approximately 5-year-old child was being held in time out inside a vehicle with no windows down for punishment purposes.”

Officers arrived at the scene, noting the temperature was 82 degrees.

“I determined that the vehicle the child was in also was not turned on, and all windows were indeed rolled up. I spoke to the mother of the child who advised that her son was 4 years old, and was acting out, so she placed (him) in the vehicle for punishment.”

“I verified with the mother that the vehicle was turned off and the windows were rolled up, and the mother stated ‘yes.'”

The mother was identified as 28-year-old Jesica Lee Brown. She confirmed the boy was in the car by himself, the statement says.

“Officer Breeze made contact with the 4-year-old child, and she touched (his) head, and it was hot to the touch, and the child was sweating. Officer Breeze also advised that (the child) had puffy eyes.”

Breeze then spoke with Brown, the statement says, and “Jesica admitted to using meth and heroin. Officer Breeze advised that Jesica gave consent to search her purse which was located in the vehicle where the child was being held. Officer Breeze advised that inside of Jesica’s purse she located a used syringe needle. Officer Breeze also advised that she located multiple other pieces of drug paraphernalia that is consistent with heroin use.”

The suspect told officers that additional needles that she had purchased for drug use, but had not yet been used, were in the back seat with the boy.

“It was determined through my investigation that the (boy), who was being held inside the vehicle for punishment, was in immediate access to the used drug syringe, and the other items of drug paraphernalia,” the statement says. “Jesica was taken into custody for child abuse and child endangerment. Jesica was transported and booked into the Salt Lake County Jail without incident.”

Charges Brown is facing are endangerment of a child, a third-degree felony; and child abuse/neglect, a class B misdemeanor. Her bail was set at $15,000.


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