Fayette County

Lexington woman accused of leaving children in car pleads not guilty

A Lexington woman who allegedly left four children alone in a car in a store parking lot pleaded not guilty Wednesday.

Lakesha Coney, 34, of Lexington was charged with one count of felony wanton endangerment after officers responded to the Family Dollar on New Circle Road around 11 a.m. Tuesday, Lexington police spokeswoman Sherelle Roberts said.

Coney declined to comment after her arraignment. Her friend Willis Buster, 58, who was shopping at the store at the same time, said Coney left the kids in the car when she ran inside for no more than 10 minutes. He said three of the car's windows were down, and the older children were watching the infant. "The thing has been blown out of proportion," Buster said.

According to court records, an officer found four children in a 1997 Buick Century. The children were 7 months and 1, 7 and 8 years old. The vehicle was not running, the police report says. The driver's window was up, and the other three windows were partially rolled down.

"The child was sweating profusely and was visibly upset," the report says.

It was around 84 degrees in Lexington at 11 a.m. Tuesday, according to the National Weather Service.

Coney was released from the Fayette County jail after posting 10 percent of a $5,000 bond. A preliminary hearing is set for 8:30 a.m. Aug. 13.