A California man is in police custody after he allegedly left his 9-month-old baby girl in his car while enjoying a lap dance at a Los Angeles strip club. According to a report by The Los Angeles Times, the man identified as 24-year-old Auwin Dargin left his own baby girl inside the car, parked outside the Synn Gentleman’s Club for nearly an hour during a daytime visit there. A Van Nuys resident, Dargin has been charged with child abuse for his irresponsible behavior, prosecutors confirmed.
According to a report by KTLA, it was the assistant manager of the strip club, a man identified as Matthew Nadeau, who heard the cries of the baby coming from inside the locked car. He was patrolling the parking lot located outside the club when he heard the cries of the baby. Nadeau had additional attention on the car because he had seen one of his customers (later confirmed to be Auwin Dargin) leaving the establishment every 15 minutes, approaching the car, and then going back inside the club.
Nadeau, along with another employee, a waitress at the strip club, stepped outside the club and went to the parking lot to investigate. The duo was shocked to find the baby inside the car crying. Matthew, a 30-year-old father of five, was particularly aghast at what he discovered. “We hear crying and then we saw a baby in the car,” Nadeau said.
He said that the window of the car was partially open and that the baby was visibly shaken.
By then, one of Matthew’s cousins had also reached the parking lot. He managed to squeeze his arms through the partially open window and was able to unlock the car door and take the baby out. The baby was continuously crying and was quickly handed over to the waitress who gave the baby a cup of water. The baby’s body was warm, and it was clear that the little one was in terrible discomfort.
Matthew quickly informed his manager about the incident, who then went inside and found the father of the baby, Auwin Dargin, in the middle of receiving a lap dance. The manager walked in and stopped the action, which upset Dargin. Even after Dargin was told the dance was stopped because they found his baby inside the car in the parking lot, he remained irate about the fact that the manager had dared to stop his dance.
Dargin quickly went outside the strip club, shouting and yelling. “Just give me my baby and I know I am messing up,” Dargin yelled at the manager.
However, assistant manager Matthew Nadeau was in no mood to let Dargin walk away from there with the baby. He called the police and ordered Dargin to call his wife, then added, “You can leave, but you are not leaving with your baby. I have daughters — over my dead body am I going to let you take this baby today.”
Dargin, who was already incensed for being interrupted during his lap dance, accused Nadeau of kidnapping his baby. He then got into a dispute with another customer and ran away from the club, leaving his baby behind. However, he did not get far as officers from the Los Angeles Police Department had already reached the location. The officers asked him to stop, and Dargin was quickly taken into custody.
Even LAPD officers were stunned to hear what the young father did to his own baby. Talking to news reporters, LAPD officer Charles Chacon said, “I thought it was unbelievable. I could not believe a father would put his child in that type of danger.”
On Monday, Dargin pleaded not guilty to one count of child abuse, as confirmed by the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office. If convicted of the charges, Dargin faces up to six years in prison.
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