The Arizona mom who got arrested after she left her kids in a hot car while she went on a job interview is finally speaking out for the first time.
Shanesha Taylor made national headlines for leaving both her 2-year-old and 6-month-old boys inside a hot car with windows slightly opened for a desperately needed job interview.
At the time of her arrest and temporary jail stint, Taylor was homeless, unemployed and left without a sitter who bailed on her at the last minute.
Faced with what she thought were no other options, Taylor opted to leave her toddlers in the car, a gamble that she would be able to get the job to help get her back on her feet. The decision landed her jail and with the possibility of being tried on felony child abuse charges. She also lost custody of her kids. Her situation resonated with so many people that a Kickstarter campaign was launched and she received over $115,000 in donations by the time she was released from jail.
Take a look at the highlights from the televised interview:
So where is that money going?
In her first ever interview, Shanesha says all the funds raised are going to a trust account for the kids, a move that was part of her deal with the prosecutors to get all charges dropped. She also explained that her babysitter flaked on her the day of the interview and her choice to leave the kids in the car was fueled by “desperation.”
Catch the highlights:
On when she gets to see her kids now:
I saw them [last] Monday. I get to see them every weekend. We definitely have a lot of family time and do as many activities as we can in a short two-day period.
On making the decision to leave them in the car:
It wasn’t necessarily a moment of decision. It was planned out beforehand and the plans fell through. I actually had a sitter scheduled and that person wasn’t available or I guess they just flaked on me is the best way to say it.
It was a moment of desperation. It was me knowing my family was in crisis and knowing that I had to make a choice between providing for my children or caring for my children.
On if she thinks she acted reasonably or responsibly:
That’s a difficult question because it’s making a choice of desperation. It’s choosing what is the best option,what is the best thing to do in this particular situation. Be it to provide food, a roof, clothes, shoes for them. Or take this moment and care for them.
On the money:
That money is going in a trust account for the children.
On her advice to struggling families:
The message is I understand your family is in crisis, but reach out, seek that help. I do understand that there are holes in the governmental system that they don’t necessary have the funding or programs available to help you. But there are other sectors. There are the non-profit sectors have stepped up to fill those gaps and make sure that families that are in crisis are taken care of, so just reach out.
Taylor’s two children were released into the custody of family members. Taylor has to jump through some court-ordered hoops in order to regain custody.