Breona Watkins' first mistake was driving without a working headlight at 1 a.m.
Sheriff's deputies noticed that infraction early Tuesday as Watkins drifted her silver 2005 Dodge Stratus 15 feet into an intersection during a red light and then backed up, the Sun Sentinel in Fort Lauderdale reported.
The deputies signaled Watkins to pull over — and that's when she realized her second, much bigger mistake: She had failed to secure her 5-month-old in a proper car seat.
Watkins tried to remedy that error without police finding out — but it turned out to be the worst decision of the night for the 19-year-old from Lauderdale Lakes.
After pulling over the vehicle a half mile later, deputies heard the infant's cries coming from the vehicle, WFOR-TV reported.
But the sound wasn't coming from the seating area — it was coming from the trunk.
It gets worse.
Deputies said they opened the trunk and found the infant lying atop of a large pair of bush-cutting shears, a rusty metal hanger, and a large rusted tire iron, WFOR noted. Deputies added that a used gas can, used fuel pump, plastic bags, and other hazardous materials also were in the trunk, WFOR said.
Police added that the temperature in the trunk was significantly higher than outside it, the Sun Sentinel reported.
Turns out the infant had been sitting on a 14-year-old passenger's lap when police signaled Watkins to pull her over, the Sun Sentinel reported. Not wanting a ticket for failing to secure her infant in a car seat, police said Watkins told her passenger to hide the infant in the trunk through an opening in the back seat. Police said she then drove a half mile before finally stopping, the Sun Sentinel added.
Watkins was arrested and charged with child abuse without great bodily harm, resisting an officer without violence, operating without a valid driver’s license, and no safety belt for a passenger under 18.
Watkins was being held in the Broward Main Jail on Tuesday evening on a $7,000 bond.