Santa Paula Times

Oxnard woman pleads not guilty to leaving toddler in locked car

April 24, 2013
Santa Paula News

An Oxnard woman facing criminal charges after allegedly leaving her young son locked in her car outside her Santa Paula workplace for several hours pleaded not guilty in a court appearance Friday.

Silvia Serratos, 27, pleaded not guilty to felony child endangerment and denied a special allegation that she caused great bodily injury to her 2-year-old toddler son. 

Serratos was arrested last week for the October 14, 2012 incident where she allegedly left her son in a locked vehicle outside her workplace in the 300 block of West Harvard Boulevard. The temperature that day reached 85 degrees, and Serratos said she checked on the boy in the vehicle throughout the day.

According to the Santa Paula Police Department, Serratos ultimately took the boy to St. John’s Regional Medical Center, where it was determined he had suffered “devastating permanent brain damage” that a SPPD spokesman said apparently left the boy bedridden for the rest of his life.

Initially Oxnard Police investigated after hospital personnel contacted law enforcement. At that time Serratos was reportedly maintaining her son had been exposed to the heat while at an Oxnard park. Later when she said the incident occurred in Santa Paula where the child had been left in a parked vehicle, the OPD turned the case over to the SPPD.

The months-long investigation ended when Serratos, who in the interim gave birth to another child, was arrested April 17 in Oxnard. Serratos was booked into Ventura County jail after her arrest on allegations of child abuse causing great bodily injury and being held on bail of $100,000. Serratos, who remains in jail, is due back in court on April 29.