A Fort Lee woman who left her sleeping toddler alone in a car faces criminal charges after a tow-truck company towed the illegally parked vehicle with the baby inside, police said.
Yuqing Jiang, 46, of Fort Lee, told police she parked in the Fort Lee Towne Center lot on Schlosser Street Monday and ran into a Chase Bank on nearby Main Street.
She needed to make a quick deposit a few minutes before the bank’s 6 p.m. closing time and left her 2-year-old daughter, who was sleeping, inside the car, she later told police.
“When When Ms. Jiang returned to her vehicle, she noticed that it was missing and called 911,” said police Capt. Matthew Hintze.
A police dispatcher who took the call determined the vehicle was towed from the lot in violation of a borough ordinance, Hintze said.
Signs in the bank alert customers they are not allowed to park in the Schlosser Street lot, police said.
ABC Towing of Fort Lee towed Jiang’s car – with the child still inside – to its facility on Bergen Boulevard and mile-and-a-half away, police said.
The toddler was found by police on the rear seat of the vehicle, still asleep and under blankets, Hintze said.
The 2-year-old was not in a car seat, he added.
Jiang was reunited with her daughter and then arrested on charges of abuse, abandonment, cruelty, and neglect of a child, Hintze said.
The child was taken from Jiang and released to her family members. The state Division of Child Protection of Permanency was notified of the incident and officers with Fort Lee Police Juvenile Bureau investigated, Hintze said.
Jiang was taken to police headquarters and released at 9:17 p.m. with a summons to appear in Bergen County Superior Court on April 13, police said.
Hintze said tow-truck drivers are not responsible for searching vehicles.
“A vehicle being that is being towed and is locked would not be searched by the tow operator,” Hintze said.
Credit: NY Post