By Nita Johnson
LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. —
A London man charged with leaving his child in his vehicle for more than two hours will face a preliminary hearing next week.
Kenneth Scott Robinson, 33, of Oak Road in London, was arraigned in Laurel District Court on Wednesday on charges of first-degree wanton endangerment for leaving his 2-year-old son inside his vehicle on Monday. Since the charge is a felony, Robinson had to enter a not guilty plea, as felony charges must be handled at the circuit court level. Robinson was scheduled for a preliminary hearing on Tuesday, July 3 in Laurel District Court, at which time evidence in the case will be presented. Based on that evidence, the Laurel District Judge will determine if “probable cause” of a felony was committed.
London Police Chief Stewart Walker said if probable cause was found, the case would be sent before a Laurel grand jury for indictment. If not, the case will be referred back to the district court level on amended charges of a misdemeanor. A misdemeanor can carry up to 12 months in jail.
The child was found inside Robinson’s vehicle, parked outside the Patton-Chesnut-Binder Insurance Agency on South Main Street in London around 12:30 p.m. Monday. Walker said while the temperatures outside were 85 degrees or above, tests conducted by London Police Department showed temperatures were over 100 degrees inside the vehicle. None of the windows in the vehicle were cracked, according to Walker.
Walker confirmed that Robinson is employed at the insurance agency and that Robinson was supposed to have dropped the child off at a day care center en route to work. Walker said he did not believe Robinson intentionally left the child unattended in the vehicle.
“It’s my understanding that the family overslept and he (Robinson) went out and got some breakfast and then everyone got ready,” he said. “He was supposed to drop the child off at day care. I don’t think he intentionally meant to leave the child in the car. But when you are the adult in charge, you are to be responsible.”
Walker added the child was breathing when removed from the hot vehicle, and taken to Saint Joseph London.
“I understood that he (the child) was probably going to be treated and released, but I think he wasn’t released until the following day.”
Walker has no explanation as to how the child, who was also seat belted inside a car seat in the vehicle, survived the ordeal other than to say, “It’s by the grace of God” that the 2-year-old boy survived.
Robinson was arrested for first-degree wanton endangerment. Jail records indicate that he was booked into the jail at 2:50 p.m. and was released at 3:30 p.m. No bond was listed.