ORLANDO, Fla. Two Orange County parents were arrested on child-abuse charges after telling authorities they accidentally left their 3-year-old daughter in a stroller while they rode Pirates of the Caribbean at Walt Disney World.
A Magic Kingdom patron alerted park management about 4:45 p.m. Saturday after spotting the girl in a stroller parked in the sun, according to a report released Monday by the Orange County Sheriff’s Office.
The girl was hot, turning red, covered in sweat and appeared to be “lifeless,” the report states.
A paramedic touched and shook her, but she failed to respond.
Saturday’s highs were in the low 90s with no rain, and deputies estimate the child was in the sun for 45 minutes to an hour.
Paramedics revived the girl by taking her indoors and giving her water.
Deputies said the heat might have become deadly.
“[A paramedic] advised that if medical intervention had not been administered the female child was nearing signs of heat exhaustion with unknown results up to and including death,” the report states.
Parents Juan Carlos, 35, and Danette Rodriguez, 32, approached park workers, seeking their daughter, about 50 minutes later.
The couple said the girl was asleep inside a double stroller and got lost in the shuffle as their group of two adults and four children approached the ride, they told investigators.
When they entered the attraction, the father said he thought his wife had their daughter, while she thought her husband had her.
Shortly afterward, the father went back outside to move the stroller to a designated area but failed to see the little girl, he told deputies.
The parents realized their daughter was missing only after they left the ride.
The couple, of Cypress Trail Drive, were arrested on one count each of child abuse and released from the Orange County Jail on Sunday on $2,500 bail each.
They could not be reached for comment Monday night.
The children were turned over to relatives while the Department of Children & Families investigates.