Christina Tufford accidentally locked her 10-month-old daughter in the car earlier this month
A Florida mother is speaking out after she accidentally left her baby daughter in a hot car — and needed assistance from a police officer to get her out.
Mom Christina Tufford told WPTV that she was leaving a local Lowe’s earlier this month when she placed her 10-month-old daughter, Maddie, in a car seat while she unloaded her purchases.
Tufford turned on the air conditioning with her key fob and placed the keys on the car seat as she took care of the items, and then closed the doors. When she went to open them, she realized she was locked out.
“All the doors locked, and she was inside with the keys,” Tufford told the news station.
Remembering the vehicle came equipped with OnStar, Tufford then called the service to see if they would be able to unlock the doors for her. But her account was expired, and even though Tufford offered to pay to restart the service right there, in order to do so, someone needed to press the OnStar button inside the vehicle.
“I’ll do whatever it takes,” Tufford said she told the OnStar representative. “I’ll pay whatever amount of money it takes. Just please reactivate my service so you guys can unlock my car.”
“More panic was setting in because time was running out,” she recalled, adding that she resorted to calling the police for help after things couldn’t move forward with OnStar.
Once Officer Kyle Osinga arrived on the scene, he tried to unlock the doors of the vehicle with the help of a tow truck driver, but neither were able to get vehicle open. Even with Osinga there, OnStar said they still couldn’t open the door for Tufford because of the inactive account.
“I check on the kid a little bit later and the kid is not okay anymore,” Osinga recalled to WPTV. “The head’s down and the eyes are closed. That’s when the adrenaline, that’s when I start to freak out.”
After trying to break the car’s windows with his baton, Osinga used a window punch to break the glass and save Maddie.
“Very lethargic, wasn’t breathing good, I happened to have a whole thing of water bottles, poured water on her,” he told the news station, which aired footage of the rescue from his body cam.
Fortunately, Maddie was okay, and now Tufford hopes others will learn from the incident, like to carry a window punch with them in case of emergencies — something she is now doing, she said.