Police said the reason this Saudi Muslim couple was not arrested after leaving their baby in a vehicle for just under an hour was due to claims that this kind of behavior is allowed in their culture.
KiiiTV Officers said the parents told them they were from Saudi Arabia and that it was normal in their culture to leave their children in the car. Police said they were practicing cultural sensitivity in terms of waiting to make an arrest, but on Monday they said that was not the reason.
It all started with a cell phone video that first made its way around Facebook. It showed an officer locating a baby left inside a van at the Starplex movie theater. Officers said they discovered it was an eight-month-old girl and she was left inside for 46 minutes before her 29-year-old father and 17-year-old mother came out with their other four-year-old child. They told police it is normal behavior in Saudi Arabia, which is where they are from.
Child Protective Services has now become involved in the case and police said the parents are facing child abandonment and child endangerment charges, which means they could face up to two years in jail and pay up to a $10,000 fine.