April 5, 2016
On April 4, 2016 at approximately 4 pm Deputy Shelby Kilian was flagged down by a citizen at the Bronson Laundromat. The citizen told Deputy Kilian she found a screaming infant locked inside a vehicle with the windows rolled up, parked in a parking space in front of the Laundromat. The citizen was unable to immediately locate a parent nearby.
Deputy Kilian located the owner of the vehicle, identified as Nelson Santo Perez (12-13-84) who was inside the Laundromat with three other small children. Deputy Kilian ordered Perez to open the locked vehicle and to remove the infant. Deputy Kilian reported Perez appeared to be unconcerned and was prompted numerous times to react faster to unlock and remove the baby from the hot vehicle parked in direct sunlight. Deputy Kilian found the infant was drenched in sweat and her breathing was labored. Perez stood by as Deputy Kilian undressed the child in efforts to cool her. Perez’s main concern was he would be fined by Deputy Kilian. EMS responded and recommended transporting the baby to the hospital for further treatment. Perez initially refused to allow the baby to be transported.
Ultimately Perez agreed to allow EMS to transport the baby to Shands at UF to be evaluated. Doctors recommended the child be kept overnight for observation. The Department of Children and Family Services responded and have opened their own investigation.
LCSO Investigators were able to retrieve the video surveillance footage from the Laundromat and determined Perez entered the Laundromat with three small children and was inside for approximately 20 minutes before Deputy Kilian arrived.
Perez was located at his home later this same evening and Deputies arrested him for felony neglect of a child. Perez is being held at the Levy County Detention Facility. His bond has been set at $100,000.00.
The infant is expected to make a full recovery.