Video of Vancouver cop lecturing mom about kids left in hot car goes viral
VANCOUVER - Child protection officials are investigating following several 911 calls earlier last week about two children that were found in a locked vehicle on a warm day with the car alarm blaring.
Vancouver police received multiples calls last Monday just before 4 p.m., from citizens who spotted the kids inside a car parked at a grocery store on Grandview Highway in east Vancouver.
Temperatures that day reached the low to mid-20s, but temperatures inside enclosed spaces such as cars parked in the sun quickly get much higher.
In a video on Facebook that has gone viral, a Vancouver police officer can be seen berating a woman. In a heated exchange, he lectures her on the severity of leaving children inside vehicles on a hot day.
"Do you understand what you've done? Your children could have died," the officer can be heard saying in a raised voice.
When the mom tries to interject, the officer interrupts and says: "No, you don't seem to understand the danger you've put these children into. Listen to me. You're talking when you should be listening. Your children could have died. The windows were up, it's hot out."
"Why are you arguing? Do you want me to seize your kids and you'll never see them again?"
During an unrelated press conference on Friday, Vancouver police Chief Adam Palmer was asked about the officer on the video.
He said that a girl, 6, and a boy, 3, were freed from inside the vehicle.
He said the officer in the video is a "highly respected member of the police department" and a "hard-working, dedicated officer."
"I know that he has children of his own and you have to remember that police officers are just people," said Palmer, adding the sergeant was trying to explain the "gravity of the situation."
"We're all human beings and everyone may react slightly differently to every set of circumstances and he was trying to convey to the woman the seriousness of what she'd done to the children."
Palmer said security tapes from the grocery store show the mom had been away from the vehicle for about 20 minutes. Several calls to 911 were made after the car alarm began to go off.
Palmer said he doesn't expect criminal charges in the case, but the Ministry of Children and Family Development was contacted and is looking into the incident.
"If anybody sees anything like that, that's when you do use 911," said Palmer.