Ashley Marie DeJesus, age 25
On May 12, 2018, the Berks County District Attorney's Child Abuse Detectives received a call from Berks County Communications / 911 Center with a request to contact the Spring Township Police Department relative to a child abuse investigation.
Spring Township Police Officers responded to a call where 5 small children (ages ranging from 11 months to 8 years old) were discovered locked in a car. During the initial investigation, officers learned the mother left the children alone while she went to work at a local shopping store.
Officers were able to make contact with the child after one of the children unlocked one of the car doors. Western Berks EMS (Emergency Medical Services) responded to the location to check on the children. Due to an elevated temperature on the smallest child, all the children were taken to the Reading Tower Health (Reading Hospital) for evaluation.
Officers made contact with the children's mother who confirmed she left the children alone in the car while she went to work. Detectives with the Berks County District Attorney's Child Abuse Unit were called and responded to the hospital.
Berks County Detectives learned from the mother of the children, Ashley Marie DeJesus, that she intentionally left the children alone locked in the car while she went to work. The mother admitted she parked the car a distance away so no one would be able to see the children in the car. The mother admitted she was running late and unable to take the children to day care for fear of being late for work.
Berks County Children & Youth Services were also called and responded. The children were turned over to the father with a safety plan put in place.
On May 16, 2018, detectives obtained a warrant of arrest from Magisterial District Judge Ann Young for the defendant on the afore-mentioned charge.
On May 16, 2018, the defendant surrendered herself to the Berks County Detectives. She was transported to the Berks County Sheriff's Central Processing Unit for processing and arraignment. Bail was set at $50,000 unsecured and she was released awaiting further court proceedings.