Babies left in hot cars: Accident or crime?

Some parents are never prosecuted. Antonio Balta got 20 years.

After more than an hour in the cinder-block meeting room talking about accidentally killing his daughter, Balta looks tired. Six years in prison have taken a toll. Nobody would mistake him for a little boy now.

During his time behind bars, Balta has earned his GED and now helps other inmates study for the exam. He does carpentry and has crafted an elaborate wooden dollhouse for a niece. He goes months without hearing from anyone on the outside. (As part of his sentence, he is forbidden from contacting the Bashford family.)

His cell is lined with photos of Veronika. He says he thinks of her every day. "Every time I see kids on TV, I think about holding her," he says. "She would be 7 now. I think about what she would look like and what we would be doing for her birthday."

Glenn Mitsui/Getty Images
Antonio Balta has spent the past five years at the Sumter Correctional Institution in Bushnell, Florida. When he gets out, he'll likely be deported.
Antonio Balta has spent the past five years at the Sumter Correctional Institution in Bushnell, Florida. When he gets out, he'll likely be deported.

A prison administrator lets Balta know it's time to go. He walks slowly through narrow halls toward the prison yard. The hot summer sun blazes in through the door frame. Balta pauses for a moment before stepping outside.

There are 14 years left on his sentence, but he'll never get out of prison.

« Previous Page
 |
 
1
 
2
 
3
 
4
 
5
 
6
 
All
 
My Voice Nation Help
1 comments
klyliekeough
klyliekeough

I believe it's impossible for a parent to leave their kids alone in a hot car. If you would consider it an accident, then perhaps, something could have been wrong. Parents have to responsible for these innocent kids. It could be negligence. I came across this read http://bit.ly/11uziF4 and I'm thinking, it could be considered as serious accident. 

 
Miami Concert Tickets
Loading...