Lelier Perez Hernandez Arrested for Leaving Tot to Die in Hot Day-care Van
Police have made an arrest in the July 12 death of 2-year-old Dominicue Andrews. Police allege 23-year-old Lelier Perez Hernandez, the driver of a van charged with transporting children for the Jomiba Learning Center in Homestead, left Andrews in the vehicle, where the child eventually died due to the heat. Perez is being charged with aggravated manslaughter and tampering with evidence.
Previous reports claimed the driver failed to conduct a head count as children left the van. Young Andrews was left in the van all day, strapped to his seat, as it sat in an uncovered alley behind the day-care center.
Later in the day, Hernandez suddenly realized he hadn't seen Andrews since he had picked him up. Without telling anyone, he went to the van, found the boy's body unresponsive, and laid him out on a slab of asphalt. Hernandez then participated in a search for the boy until another employee found his body.
Hernandez sits in the Pretrial Detention Center on $15,000 bail.
The boy's family has already filed a lawsuit against the day-care center, and owner Misael Ramos has voluntarily closed the center until the investigation is complete. Previous reports said Ramos was the only person connected to the facility who had the proper chauffeur's license to be driving the van.
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