A Williston woman was detained on Friday after she left her 6-month-old baby in her car in a store parking lot, according to the Aiken Department of Public Safety.
Alexis Alichia Trottie, 24, of Allendale Avenue, was charged with unlawful conduct toward a child. She was placed in the Aiken County detention center but had been released as of Monday afternoon.
The incident happened about 1:30 p.m. on Friday on Fabian Drive, according to a report.
A witness told officers she was inside shopping at Cato and that while walking to her truck in the parking lot she heard a baby crying, according to the report. She looked around and determined the crying was coming from the vehicle parked right next to hers.
The vehicle's windows were tinted and rolled up, and the witness couldn't see anyone inside, according to the report. She walked around and checked one of front doors, which were unlocked, and found a baby lying in the middle of the backseat next to a child safety seat.
By the time the witness walked to the back to get the child out, the baby had fallen to the floorboard, according to the report. A second witness walked upon the scene and called police.
Shortly after an officer arrived, Trottie and her sister came running out of Ross Dress For Less yelling “that was their baby,” according to the report. Trottie told officers that when they arrived at Ross, she thought her sister was getting the baby. The sister stated she thought Trottie was getting the baby, according to the report.
Trottie told officers they were only in the store for about five minutes, but the witness had been holding the baby for at least 10 minutes, the report stated.
A rear-facing child safety seat was in the car; however, it was not buckled in, police said. Trottie told officers the baby was in the car seat the last time she saw her.
The temperature outside at the time was 88 degrees, with a heat index of 91, according to the report.
“(Reporting officer) also observed that the asphalt in the parking lot was recently resealed, making the temperature rise even further,” the report stated.
Trottie was taken into custody, and the child was turned over to the Department of Social Services.
Teddy Kulmala covers the crime beat for the Aiken Standard and has been with the newspaper since August 2012. He is a native of Williston and majored in communication studies at Clemson University.