Bond remains at $30,000 for day care worker charged in boy's death

By Jerry Hume, Reporter
Last Updated: Friday, August 11, 2017, 10:46 AM EDT

An Orange County judge Friday morning set bond at $30,000 for the woman charged in the death of a 3-year-old boy left in a hot van at an Orlando day care facility.

Deborah St. Charles, 51, teared up briefly as she appeared before the judge for a brief hearing.

A judge appointed a public defender to represent her, who laid into police over their investigation, hoping the judge would lower the bond amount.

“What kind of caregiver was Deborah? What kind of history did she have at that facility? What did her colleagues think about her? What did the other children think about the level of care she provided? This investigation could have been better," public defender Arjun Nair asked. "I hold officers to that higher standard.”

The judge denied the request to reduce bond.

Once St. Charles bonds out, she will not be allowed to work at a day care facility or have interactions with minors.

St. Charles was arrested Thursday evening in the death of Myles Hill, who spent more than 11 hours in a hot van at Little Miracles Academy on Plymouth Avenue. St. Charles was booked into the Orange County Jail on aggravated manslaughter charges and had not bonded out as of Friday morning.

According to an arrest warrant, St. Charles, who has been charged with aggravated manslaughter of a child by culpable negligence, admitted she didn't conduct a head count when she dropped off children at two Little Miracles locations.

St. Charles told police she picked up Myles on Monday morning, along with other children, in a day care van. She told investigators she first drove to Little Miracles Academy II on Colonial Drive. While she unloaded cleaning supplies, she assumed all the kids got out of the van, including Myles, the arrest reported said. St. Charles then drove to Little Miracles Academy on Plymouth Avenue.

She was on the phone when she got out of the van, grabbed some personal items from behind the driver’s seat and locked the van for the day, according to investigators.

It was not until more than 11 hours later that a day care worker found the boy, dead in the far back seat of the van.

Orlando Police said the inside of the van reached 144 degrees. The Medical Examiner's Office concluded Myles died from extreme heat.