According to USA Today, the person breaking into the vehicle was doing so at the behest of the children’s own mother. She was not getting a haircut, but rather seeking help after she had accidentally locked her children–and her keys–in her car. Multiple sources reported that the mother had left her children in the car while she got a haircut based on witness accounts, but those happened to be wrong.
From USA Today:
“It’s not like she left the kids in the car, no,” said Azir Brohi. “It’s not like she did something wrong.”
Brohi, owner of Postal Plus One, has surveillance video from inside the suburban Houston store showing the mother walk in with her two toddlers. The children play in the store while Mom wraps up an errand. She then takes her children’s hands, and they walk out together.
“When she finished, she went outside and was putting her kids in the car like normal,” said Heidy Lopez, a Postal Plus One employee. “When she was finished putting them in the car seat, I guess that’s when it locked and that’s when everything happened.”
Apparently after realizing her children were locked inside her car, the mother appears on video frantically walking back into the postal store, asking for help. Another customer inside the store grabbed a hammer and went out into the lot and broke the woman’s back car window. On cellphone video posted online by KHOU-TV that went viral Monday, children can be heard crying in the background and the mother appears upset.
“Like a caring mother, she watches over her kids,” said Lopez.
As the video continues, the customer who broke the window walks back into Postal Plus One with cuts on his arm followed by the mother and her two toddlers sipping on bottles of water.
“They were OK,” said Lopez. “She seemed happy and relieved. She came inside because she wanted to calm down after everything that happened.”
Though we reported based on information available at the time, we apologize for our part in painting this loving mother in a negative light. We hope that all agencies that reported the incorrect information based on the original sources will follow suit and correct the story.
ORIGINAL STORY BELOW:
A group of shoppers at a Katy, Texas strip mall smashed through the windows of a hot car on Monday to rescue two screaming children who were locked inside. Where was their mother–a job interview? Tending to an emergency? “Accidentally forgotten” all day? Nope–she was getting a haircut.
Video taken at the scene of the rescue shows a small group of heroic men and women desperately attempting to rescue the children, finally smashing a window to remove the kids from the oppressive oven. “The kids were in there crying,” nearby shop owner Gabriel Del Valle told KHOU. “I mean you would understand. It’s real hot.”
He said that one man used a hammer to smash the window. “And even then they could barely open the doors because there was a child lock on. Kids were in the crying.” After several minutes, the children were removed from the hot vehicle. Footage shows shoppers even attempting to crawl on top of the car to climb inside when the child safety locks presented them difficulty.
By the time the children were safe, their mother ran outside the salon where she was getting her hair done. She claimed she had only left them temporarily, and admitted she made a mistake. The mother pleaded with the shoppers not to call police, and they (unfortunately) listened.