Twin babies found dead in car after father allegedly forgot them, went to work

Posted at 7:08 PM, Jul 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-26 19:09:10-04

NEW YORK — Twin babies, a boy and a girl, were found dead in the back of a car in New York City, after their father forgot them when he went to work, according to  sources.

Officials say the twins, each 1 year old, were found in the back of a white Toyota sedan at West Kingsbridge Road and Kingsbridge Terrace in the Bronx.

The father of the children, 39-year-old Juan Rodriguez, went to work at 8 a.m. Friday and forgot the babies, Phoenix and Mariza Rodriguez, in the car. He returned to the car at 4 p.m.

Rodriguez was charged with two counts each of manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide, police said Saturday morning.

"How can you leave the children behind and forget about the kids?" C.J. Rivera, the father of a 9-year-old, wondered. "As a father you're supposed to take care of your family, take care of your responsibilities."

Rivera said the news was shocking, even more so because he says the neighborhood is community oriented and usually has steady foot traffic thanks to a nearby bus stop.

The father has been taken into custody, the fire official said.

A source told WPIX that Rodriguez, went to work at the Veterans Affairs hospital nearby. He returned to the car around 4 p.m., drove a short distance, and noticed the babies.

Shortly after the crime tape went up, devastated neighbors gathered across the street to leave candles as part of a makeshift memorial for the children.

A cause of death hasn't yet been determined.