Strangers Help Free Toddler Locked in Hot Car at Midnight After Man Blacks Out at a Bar

Jerry Mitchell's car
Fox 35

A man has been arrested after concerned citizens found a toddler locked in his vehicle, begging to be let out. Jerry Mitchell was taken into custody after customers at the Friendly Confines Bar and Restaurant in Winter Park, Florida, worked to help the girl free herself from the sweltering vehicle. She's now safe from harm.

  • Police explained that the toddler was found trapped in a car just before midnight on Tuesday evening.

    Fox 35 reported that a waitress saw the child and called 911 after trying to help her out of a locked car parked in the parking lot of the Friendly Confines Bar and Restaurant. 

    "Saw the child, called 911 after trying to open the doors," waitress Erin Brock explained. She said the child looked "wide-eyed and confused" as she struggled in the locked vehicle with no adult in sight.

     "A lot of customers were interacting with the child, like blowing kisses through the glass -- like glass to glass. The child was just like sweaty and nervous, not crying or distressed, just super confused," she added.

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  • One customer caught the girl's attention and she began banging on the window to be freed.

    Brock added that the woman started instructing the girl on how she could free herself. "The child's standing on the driver's seat, and they're face to face with each other, battening down, and she's like, 'OK, open the door. Get in the handle. Good job! Good job!'" she said.

    It took 45 minutes to an hour for the little girl in the vehicle to figure out the locks and free herself. 

    "The door unlocked, alarm was going off, grabbed the baby, and we just hung out over here on the patio, until the paramedics got here to make sure the baby was OK," Brock continued.

  • Police arrested Jerry Mitchell, who had allegedly left the girl in the car in the first place while he was in the bar.

    Mitchell had gone into the bar several times that day, the arrest reported noted, but at one point he had gone to pick up the child. He then returned to the Friendly Confines Bar and Restaurant, but later told authorities that he doesn't remember anything because he blacked out.

    According to News 6, one of the child's parents then arrived and stated that Mitchell was supposed to be watching the little one.

    Mitchell was arrested and later charged with child neglect and leaving a baby unattended in a vehicle.