911: Mom who left toddler in car overnight said child was kidnapped
Investigators learned 3-year-old was in car all night
SANFORD, Fla. – A newly released 911 call Monday showed how Casey Keller, 33, now charged with child neglect for leaving her 3-year old daughter in a hot car told deputies she thought her car was stolen.
"I went down to get her out of my car and my car is gone and my baby is missing," a panicked-sounding Keller said on the phone.
Deputies say she called 911 around 11:15 a.m. Sunday. As deputies sent dispatch the scene, that's when the operator began learning more of the story.
"OK, and you left her in the vehicle about how long ago," the operator asked.
"Um, about an hour maybe? I went upstairs. She was sleeping so I cracked down the window and came to get her and it wasn't even an hour, I don't know," Keller said as she began to cry.
However, when deputies got to the Vista Haven Apartment home on Petunia Terrace, they quickly learned the toddler had been left in the car all night.
"We knew something was up," said Seminole County Sheriff's spokesperson, Kim Cannday.
Deputies, after speaking to witnesses and the other two children inside the home, believe the child had been left there after Keller went on a late-night liquor run at 11:45 p.m. Saturday night.
"It was about 11:15 a.m. the next morning, 12 hours later when she realized the child was not in the apartment and in fact missing," Cannaday said.
In the 911 phone call, you can also hear Keller tell the operator the child was in the car seat and that she always leaves her car doors unlocked.
Cannaday said the Seminole County Sheriff's Office is on the few agencies who partners with Florida's Department of Children and Families and houses their own Child Protective Services Unit. Cannaday could not comment on how or if they've received complaints or investigated Keller in the past, however did say her children were with other family Monday nnight.
"All of the children are now going to be in the care of family members," she said. "The primary concern is the child, we know she's going to be alright, so we are going to focus the attention to the rest of the family. Our CPS division will look into the family dynamics, see if there is any situation we can help with providing services to them."
Keller bonded out of jail Monday morning on a $15,000 bond. No one answered the door when News 6 stopped by afterward.
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