HUNTINGTON - A man from Maryland has pleaded not guilty to charges that he left his daughter in a hot car in Huntington Thursday.
Melvin Marroquin was arraigned Friday on charges of endangering the welfare of a child and reckless endangerment.
Police responded to a 911 call from a shopper reporting a child left alone inside a pickup truck in the parking lot at a shopping complex. When they arrived on the scene, police say the 2-year-old girl was strapped into a carseat and they had to break the windows of the truck to get her out. The temperature inside the pickup truck was estimated to be 120 degrees.
Officers then raced her inside a store to cool off and get a drink.
Marroquin, 30, of Maryland, had been shopping with his parents in Marshall's, according to police. Suffolk County Officer Derek Mangi says Marroquin initially told him he forgot his daughter was still in the truck. Police say Marroquin eventually admitted he left his daughter in the truck for about 25 minutes.
Marroquin's attorney says his client was unaware that there was a baby in the car. He told reporters that the family had been visiting relatives at a house with a lot of kids inside. He said someone else put the baby in the truck and no one took a head count.
The little girl is now in her mother's care since being treated and released from Huntington Hospital.
Marroquin is being held on $20,000 bail.