Woman who left dog in hot car at Charleston County park arrested

Yuridia Mejia-Yanez

A woman was arrested Sunday afternoon after leaving a dog locked in a hot car, according to the Charleston County Sheriff’s Office.

Yuridia Mejia-Yanez, 37, of James Street in Columbia was charged with cruelty to animals.

A woman told deputies she saw a 2- or 3-month-old Chihuahua mix in a silver Toyota 4Runner around 2 p.m. at Wannamaker County Park, according to the incident report. She said the dog was panting and appeared to be lethargic. The front and rear passenger windows were rolled down a couple inches, and she was able to reach in and get the animal.

The owner eventually appeared and told deputies that park staff told her dogs weren’t allowed in the water park, so she left it in the SUV around 12:30 p.m., with plans to check on it every half-hour or so, according to the report.

The temperature at the time was 92 degrees, with the heat index at 103, and most of the vehicle was parked in direct sunlight, according to the report,

The dog revived and appeared to be fine. Her brother took custody.

She was being held in the Charleston County jail Monday on $3,000 bail.

Reach Dave Munday at 937-5553.