A 4-year-old, stranded in a locked car as the 80-degree weather caused temperatures inside to rise, was forced to think quick to save all seven of them inside.
Police received a 911 call on Friday, May 10, from a 4-year-old, saying they were trapped inside a hot car.
Though the child was unable to tell the dispatcher where they were, authorities traced the call to the St. Charles Towne Center parking lot in Maryland.
Officers arrived at the location shortly thereafter, removing the "sweaty and scared" children from the vehicle.
The Charles County Sheriff's Office issued a statement:
"Officers helped the children out of the vehicle and Charles County Fire and Emergency Medical Services provided treatment on the scene."
10 minutes after the officers arrived, the 37-year-old woman who owned the car and was caring for the children, returned. Authorities report she was a mother to two of the children, and was babysitting the other five, all aged 2-4.
She was arrested on the spot for "illegal confinement in a motor vehicle."
The children were inside the locked car, whose windows were up, for at least 20 minutes in 80-degree heat.
Their caretaker claims she went into the store only briefly to use the restroom, but ABC-7 reports that police have obtained footage of the 37-year-old browsing for shoes.
Twitter was outraged at the children's caretaker for putting them in this situation:
The 4-year-old managed to call police using a cellphone left in the car, and it's a good thing they did for the safety of everyone involved.