This man’s recording of a woman who left her baby in the car is going viral
Most of us would do anything to save a small child from the harm of being left in a hot car, but one Richmond, California, man has sparked controversy after he followed a woman around, filming her and berating her for leaving her three-month-old in the car to go buy some video games.
In a viral video shared online over the weekend, Manny Williams says he was walking by a parked car in front of his local Gamestop when he noticed an infant sitting in the backseat. The car’s windows were all rolled down, but the baby was crying and his mom was busy in the store. Williams writes on Facebook that the mom ignored his attempts to tell her to go check on her baby, so he took out his phone and started recording what he saw. Here’s what he captured:
In the video, he gives a close up of the mom’s license plate and then narrates the situation, saying, “She’d rather get a video game than be taking care of her baby that’s in the car by himself, crying, on this hot day.” A few seconds into the video, the woman comes out of the store and goes to the car, but instead of getting the baby, she opts to roll up the windows, turn on the air conditioning, and go back inside.
Williams claims he called 9-1-1 before he started recording his video, but KTVU reports police say they didn’t receive a call until after he was done. He also claims the baby was alone in the car for about 20 minutes, but that’s difficult to verify since his video only lasts a little over a minute.
Since his video went on Facebook, it’s been viewed more than a million times, and sparked intense debate between people who think the mom made an irresponsible choice and others who think Williams was out of line. Wrote one commenter, “Girl was in plain site of her vehicle and game stops door was wide open.. When she rolled up the windows she was turning on the A/C.. I’m not defending her but the situation I think is lil blown out of preportion [sic].”
Another responded, “I don’t understand how hard it is to take the baby out of the car and sit the car seat on the floor in the store by you instead [of] letting him or her cry in the direct sunlight under a blanket. It doesn’t take long at all for them to overheat especially when they get worked up crying!”
Obviously, no one is in favor of leaving small kids alone in cars, especially when the weather is warm, but Williams’ video does make you wonder how far it’s acceptable to go in these situations. Was it necessary to broadcast the this woman’s license plate number to the world or to follow her around yelling? Is it possible that Williams overreacted to a situation that, while questionable, wasn’t actually as big of an emergency as he made it out to be?
Currently, 19 states — including California — have laws against leaving kids alone in the car, and each year we’re bombarded with heartbreaking stories about babies who died in hot vehicles. Williams’ method of dealing with this incident is definitely out there, but if there’s one good thing about his video, it’s that it’s started a serious conversation about the dangers of leaving small kids in the car as we head into the warmest months of the year.