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Woman arrested after leaving 3 children alone in unlocked car in Davie parking lot

Marialie Sainville tells police she went inside Publix to look for lost money

Marialie Sainville faces three counts of child neglect without great bodily harm.

DAVIE, Fla. – A South Florida woman was arrested Saturday after she left three children alone inside an unlocked car in a Publix parking lot while she searched for money that she believed she had dropped, police said.

Marialie Sainville, 34, of Lauderhill, was arrested on three counts of child neglect without great bodily harm.

Davie police said an officer who was investigating a crash in the parking lot of a Publix on Stirling Road was flagged down by a concerned citizen who alerted him to three children alone in a car.

Three children, ages 1, 3 and 6, were alone inside the unlocked car with the windows halfway rolled down and the engine turned off, police said. The temperature on the car's dashboard was 81 degrees, police said.

After a few minutes, Sainville approached the car and said she was inside the Publix looking for money that she believed she had dropped, police said.

Sainville told police that the 6-year-old child was watching the other two while she was inside the store.

Although she was only inside the store for three minutes, Sainville put the children at risk, police said.

"The children could have been easily taken or struck by a vehicle if they wandered out," Davie police Sgt. Mark Leone said.

Sainville was placed under arrest, and her children were turned over to a family member.


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