Police: Michigan woman left 2 toddlers locked in hot van to shoplift groceries

Police: Michigan woman left 2 toddlers locked in hot van to shoplift groceries
Stock photo of a hot car. (kurmyshov /iStock / Getty Images Plus)

ANGOLA, Ind. — A Michigan woman was arrested after police said she left her children locked in a hot van to shoplift items from a grocery store.

Sallie Wireman, 23, is charged with two counts of felony neglect of a dependent and one count of theft, WANE reported.

According to The Herald Republican, police found the orange van parked in the lot of an Angola, Indiana, grocery store with only the rear window vents open and children crying inside.

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Angola Police Officer Evan Howe rescued the children – ages 2 and 3 – whom they believe had been unattended for 37 minutes in a vehicle with an internal temperature of 128 degrees, the newspaper reported.

“Officer Howe is a great officer, and I kind of give his quick reaction to that situation to his military background. He didn’t hesitate to smash the window to get the kids out,” Angola Police Chief Stu Hamblen told the newspaper.

The children were overheated but not injured, he added.

Wireman was arrested leaving the store with items in a shopping cart she did not pay for, and the children, including a 5-month-old sibling who was not in the van, have been placed with the Indiana Department of Child Services, the newspaper reported.