Woman's family speaks out after she leaves kids in hot car - WSMV News 4

Woman's family speaks out after she leaves kids in hot car

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CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) - One woman is charged after leaving four kids inside a hot car on Monday.

Tiara Jenkins was taken into custody after a local bondsman discovered the kids at the Hamilton County Courthouse downtown.

"As I was getting out going to the courthouse, the kids started yelling and screaming and blowing the horn," said Richard Cox, Witness. "I couldn't see into the car because the windows were tinted. I started to walk away and I looked back and that's when I could see the children in the car not being attended."

This is the first hand account from Cox who discovered four kids on Monday inside a hot car.

"It's a shame, I'm a father myself and I would never leave my kids in a car like that," said Cox.

Tiara Jenkins was arrested and charged with four counts of child abuse and neglect after leaving four children ages one through four in a car alone.

Police say the keys were left in the ignition but the car was turned off and all of the windows were rolled up.

"It seems like this is happening more and more every day and everyone is aware of it, and I don't know where her mindset was at the time," said Charles Matthews, Jenkins Great-Uncle.

Charles and Patricia Matthews tell Channel 3 their great-niece is a good mother to her kids and while they are disappointed with her lapse in judgment, know that what she did wasn't with any ill will.

They say while she left her kids in the car, she was dropping off a document to help make a better life for her and her kids.

"She was trying to get a better environment for her kids as well as herself," said Patricia.

"She's a good kid trying to do what she can to improve herself," said Charles.

Kidsandcars.com says a child's body temperature rises three to five times faster than an adult's.

Even with the windows partially down, the temperature inside a parked car can reach 125 degrees in just minutes.

Cox says he's just happy no one was hurt.

Jenkins is due in court of July 31st.


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