3-Year-Old Killed In Car Fire May Have Been Due To Parents Feuding Over Custody
According to NY Daily News reports, police are questioning her father, who was also injured in the blaze, in her death. Sources say the back doors of the vehicle had been chained from the inside and first responders found two canisters of gas inside the car and a propane tank in the trunk.
Monday the little girl was identified as Zoey Pereira. She was discovered around 8:50 pm Sunday in the back of a burning 2008 Audi Sedan on Baisley Blvd. near 154th St. in Springfield Gardens, just blocks from where she lived with relatives in Rochdale Village.
Someone passing the scene spotted Pereira’s father in flames, running into the pond at Baisley Pond Park and brought him a blanket to help him extinguish his burning clothes. According to sources, the witness called 911 after Zoey’s father said, “I have my kid in the car.”
Since the chained door handles had been melted in the fire, firefighters were able to open the car doors and pull Zoey from the vehicle. She was rushed to Jamaica Hospital in a police vehicle but she did not survive her injuries.
Source say Zoey’s parents do not live together and had been in a custody battle. Her father was taken to Jamaica Hospital but later transferred to the burn unit at New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center on the Upper East Side. He was in serious but stable condition Monday.
His name has not yet been released.
SMH. This is so awful. We can’t imagine any child suffering like this. It’s crazy how people will let their own selfish desires lead them to such extremes — custody battles that end in lives being lost are beyond tragic.