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MIAMI, FLORIDA — A Florida man was arrested Thursday after leaving his 3-year-old daughter home alone with easy access to a grenade and high-powered assault rifles, officials said. He told investigators he left his child alone because he was running late for work.
The incident happened at around 6:30 p.m. local time on Wednesday when police in Miami were called to an apartment building where a toddler was found wandering alone inside the building's halls with no supervision. Responding officers were then directed to an apartment where the door was left open.
"Officers called out through an open door for anyone inside, but no response was heard. Officers then entered the apartment to determine if medical assistance was needed, but no one was inside," Detective William Moreno of the Miami Police Department said. "Instead, a great arsenal of weapons and ammunition were seen in plain view."
According to an arrest report, the officers discovered a grenade and several high-powered AR-15 assault rifles which were left on a table in the apartment's bedroom. Investigators said the weapons were in plain view, unsecured and easily accessible to the child, who was taken to a local police station where the Florida Department of Children and Families (DCF) was notified.
The child's father, identified as 25-year-old Luis Bianchi, responded to the police station after a statement was read on local television at 11 p.m. He told investigators that he had left his daughter alone at the apartment at around 6 p.m. after the girl's mother told him that she was on her way there.
"Since he was already running late for work, he sat his daughter in front of the television, put a couch against the door to his room where the weapons were, and left apartment," officers wrote in Bianchi's arrest report. "He did not leave her in the care of any adult, as he assumed the girl's mother was on her way to the apartment."
Bianchi told investigators that he had locked the apartment's front door before he left, although it was open when the child was found wandering by herself. "When asked about the weapons, he stated that he leaves them on a table, but that he blocks the door to his room with the couch," the report said. "However, when officers entered the apartment, the couch was not blocking the door completely."
The girl's father was arrested at 12:45 a.m. local time on Thursday and has been charged with one count of child neglect.