Kids left in cars: It's still happening - FOX 13 News

Kids left in cars: It's still happening

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Vita Abramenkova at Target, without her daughter (PPPD image) Vita Abramenkova at Target, without her daughter (PPPD image)
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TAMPA (FOX 13) -

It's happened again: A Pinellas Park baby was left strapped in her car seat, alone, in the heat of the summer.

This time, it was no accident.

"The suspect was well aware of the decision she made," Pinellas Park police's Sgt. Adam Geissenberger said Tuesday.

Police say Vita Abramenkova, 35, left her little girl in the car for 40 minutes Monday afternoon as she shopped at the Target on U.S. Highway 19 N.

Geissenberger says she told them she didn't want to wake her daughter, so she turned the car's air conditioning on low and went inside to shop.

It's a choice police are calling criminal.

"A 19-month-old child -- unable to care for themselves in any way, shape, or form -- strapped in a car seat, left in a highly-traveled parking lot, out of the view of the mother, 92 degrees outside," Geissenberger continued.

It comes at a time when Americans are focused like never before on kids left in hot cars. Since April, more than a dozen children have died in hot cars.

Last month, a North Carolina dad posted a plea to parents by locking himself in a car to show the dangers even to an adult. Currently, the video has nearly 1.4 million views.

The idea is now being put into play here at home. WiLD 94.1's Orlando and The Freak Show plans to sit out inside a hot car around noon on Wednesday, and post the video to their thousands of followers on social media.

It's a campaign they hope will finally shock some sense into parents everywhere.

"It almost seems like an epidemic. I have a lot of friends that don't watch the news, but I know for sure they listen to the radio. I feel like this is another outlet to get the awareness out that this keeps happening over and over and it has to stop," 94.1's Davy Rolando said Tuesday.

Thankfully, the little girl left in the car is okay, but Abramenkova is now facing felony child neglect charges.

The baby is now in her father's care.

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