It was just last week that Juan Rodriguez did the unspeakable. On his way to work at a veteran's hospital near the Bronx, the father of three had dropped off his four-year-old son at daycare. When he returned to his car at four 0'clock following his eight-hour shift he got in his car and began to drive home. It was about 10 minutes later he pulled over and discovered the lifeless bodies of his twin 1-year-old children, Luna and Phoenix still strapped in their car seats in the back of his car. Rodriguez was supposed to drop his twins at a different daycare than his four-year-old son but forgot, and his twins died as a result.
Rodriguez has been inconsolable since the tragic accident, and now faces two charges of both manslaughter and negligent homicide in the death of his children. Despite the tragedy of the accident, Rodriguez's wife, the mother of his twins, has spoken out in defense of her husband. Marissa Rodriguez released a statement to the press regarding the loss of her twins and the subsequent arrest of her husband.
"Please respect that we are grieving and completely devastated at this time,'' she stated in a press release, TODAY reports. "This is my absolute worst nightmare. Everything I do reminds me of my sweet, intelligent, beautiful babies and I am still in disbelief.
Mother of twins who died in hot car defends husband as 'a great father' https://t.co/kYKRu5dNcR— TODAY (@TODAYshow) July 29, 2019
"Though I am hurting more than I ever imagined possible, I still love my husband. He is a good person and great father and I know he would've never done anything to hurt our children intentionally. I will never get over this loss and I know he will never forgive himself for this mistake."
Rodriguez told police officers on the scene that he "blanked out," forgetting his children were in the car. "I assumed I dropped them off at daycare before I went to work," the criminal complaint states he told the police. "My babies are dead! I killed my babies!"
Rodriguez’s mother, Cathelina Valerio told the New York Post she's concerned for her son's mental health as a result of the accident. "Do you know what I’m scared of?" she said. "When he gets out, he can’t handle it. He’s going to need help."
"This was a horrific accident, and I need him by my side to go through this together,'' Marissa Rodriguez said in her statement. "Luna and Phoenix will always live in our hearts and memories and we are working hard to come to terms with what has happened. We need to grieve, be strong, and be present for our other children."
According to Kids and Cars, 24 children have died already this year from hot car deaths.