'I blanked out:' Father pleads not guilty in hot car deaths of twins in the Bronx

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KINGSBRIDGE -

A father charged in the hot car deaths of his twin babies pleaded not guilty Saturday afternoon.

Prosecutors say Juan Rodriguez, 39, told police he thought he dropped the infants, Luna and Phoenix, off at day care before heading to work in Kingsbridge Friday morning.

When he discovered his babies in the backseat of his car hours later, police say Rodriguez said, “I blanked out. My babies are dead. I killed my babies."

Rodriguez was charged with manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide in the deaths of his 1-year-old children. Police say they had body temperatures reaching 108 degrees when they died.

His bail was set at $100,000.

 
User: Michelle Ross News 12 To: link

Rodriguez lives in New City in Rockland County. He works as a social worker James J. Peters VA Medical Center. A neighbor told News 12 that Rodriguez is also a veteran.

"He does not need to serve any jail time and be punished further than what he's already going to be suffering," said neighbor Tony Caterino.

The medical examiner will determine the twins' official cause of death.

MORE: Police: 2 babies found dead inside car; father in police custody

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