1-year-old left in car dies outside Dallas ISD elementary school

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by REBECCA LOPEZ

WFAA

Posted on May 17, 2013 at 11:09 PM

Updated Wednesday, Nov 20 at 4:38 PM

A 1-year-old child who was left in a vehicle parked in the faculty lot of Frank Guzick Elementary School Friday afternoon died at Baylor Hospital. 

Dallas Lt. Paul Stokes said a witness noticed the baby inside the locked vehicle at about 1 p.m. It was about 86 degrees outside.

The woman who saw the child smashed the window with a 2x4 she had in her truck. Stokes said the witness performed CPR until EMTs arrived to take the baby to Baylor Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

"I just came out of my truck and I see something pink and I see there is a baby in there," said Exenia Gomez, who tried to rescue the child. "I looked straight at the baby and it wasn't moving or anything." 

The baby was identified as Victoria Marks. She had her first birthday on Thursday.

"I actually held her and saw her face," Gomez said. "Unimaginable." 

Gomez is an intern at the school. She said baby Victoria was wearing shorts and a pink top and was still strapped to her carseat. 

Stokes said the owner of the vehicle is a teacher at the school. The mother, identified as Vibha Marks, 42, was arrested after being interviewed at Jack Evans Police Headquarters. She's charged with child abandonment and is being held at the Lew Sterrett Justice Center without bond.

A statement from the Dallas Independent School District said the teacher was placed on administrative leave pending a police investigation. The district sent home a letter to parents and said grief counselors are on hand for anyone who needs them. 

"Obviously this is a very tragic situation," the district's statement reads. "Our thoughts and prayers are with the teacher and her family at this time, as well as the staff at Guzick Elementary."

Email rlopez@wfaa.com

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