A Florida mom was crying in court after being cuffed and hauled off to jail, charged with child neglect, after leaving her daughter alone inside a burning home.
An official with the Versailles Gardens Condominiums told CBS 4 that Erica Rosello was outside smoking a cigarette last Thursday night, when the fire broke out in her kitchen. Some local reports say the mother tried putting the oil fire out with water, and when the flames got too intense, she separated from her daughter and flagged someone down to help.
According to the NY Daily News, the 32-year-old mother ran out of the apartment and “lied to a witness by saying there was no fire and fled to a friend’s house.”
Neighbors reportedly heard a girl crying inside the burning apartment and firefighters had no time to wait for a ladder. So, firefighter David Arrencibia smashed a bedroom window, got a boost from his partner, jumped into the room and pulled the girl to safety.
“I’m grateful that the situation was such that we were able to get her out as quickly as we did. Had we taken another three, four minutes the outcome would have been different,” Arrencibia said.
Rosello’s mother told WSVN that Erica called her from a friend’s apartment and told her the little girl was dead. At that point Rosello’s mother informed her that the child was alive and being treated at the hospital.
Miami-Dade Fire Rescue spokeswoman Erika Benitez called it “the type of rescue that every firefighters hopes for.” The girl was treated for smoke inhalation and is expected to fully recover.
Rosello is to have no contact with her daughter, who is now in the grandmother’s custody. Rosello’s mother told the court that her daughter has been battling clinical and postpartum depression for years and recently chose to stop taking her medication. “She was going to start with natural herbs, so she started taking natural tea, taking natural supplements,” she said.
Records show Rosello was charged with child neglect in 2010, and also faced charges for driving under the influence and refusing a breathalyzer test in 2014.
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