The mother of a baby boy left in a blistering hot car while she allegedly played bingo at the pub has gone into hiding amid concerns for her safety.
Kaija Millar, 32, from Gladstone Park, has been charged with negligently causing serious injury and reckless conduct endangering the life of baby Easton.
The 14-month old remains in a critical but stable condition in Melbourne’s Royal Children’s Hospital.
Steve Millar has revealed his son Easton has just a 50 per cent chance of survival after he was allegedly left in the car outside a pub in Point Cook, Victoria
Kaija Millar, 32, (pictured, left) is accused of leaving 14-month-old Easton (right) in her car and abandoning him while she went to play bingo
Millar will appear at the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court on Thursday to face charges that she left her baby in a hot vehicle
Easton’s father Steve Millar broke his silence last weekend, revealing he had cut himself off from the child’s mother as she prepares to face court over the shocking allegations.
The young mum has been forced to remove herself from social media amid a tidal wave of abuse from across the nation and abroad.
Millar’s face went viral upon being outed as Easton’s mum on Friday and has been shared across the globe.
Sources have told Daily Mail Australia security staff at Melbourne Magistrates’ Court will be on on the lookout for trouble when Millar fronts up on Thursday.
Victoria Police could also deploy additional resources to the court should prosecutors express specific fears.
Daily Mail Australia can also reveal Millar was already in trouble with the law when she allegedly left her baby outside a Point Cook pokie venue last week.
Millar will front Kyneton Magistrates’ Court next month on multiple charges, including obtaining property by deception and dealing in the proceeds of crime.
The revelations follow claims Millar had been struggling with a gambling addiction, which she had kept secret from those closest to her, including the child’s father.
Mr Millar said his son had just a 50 per cent chance of survival.
Speaking to the Herald Sun newspaper Mr Millar said he was ‘heartbroken and devastated’.
‘It’s still touch and go at the moment — it’s 50-50 whether he’ll pull through,’ he said.
‘He has shown a few signs to me, when I’m talking to him you can see his mouth trying to move.’
He said his parents and both his brothers had been accompanying him to the hospital daily as he holds a bedside vigil for the youngster.
Police in Victoria claim Easton was left to swelter in his mum’s Holden Barina as temperatures reached 33C outside.
He was found unresponsive about 3pm on Wednesday in the locked car, which was parked outside the Brook Hotel in Point Cook, west of Melbourne.
A shocked family friend told the Sunday Herald Sun that Millar frequently visited the pub to play bingo.
A neighbour of the family has said they had spoken to Mr Millar and he was a ‘shell of a man’.
‘I just can’t comprehend it. This is like a lightning bolt out of the blue — it’s shocked everybody really,’ he told The Advertiser.
‘It’s a real shame because he’s just the average run-of-the-mill tradie that just goes and does his job’.
Experts said the temperature in a car on a 29C day or hotter can hit 44C within just 10 minutes, with the child likely to suffer heatstroke.
Baby Easton (pictured, left) was found unresponsive and in a critical condition. Police allege his mother Kaija Millar (right) left him in the car
Kaija Millar (pictured) has been charged. Her baby, Easton, is fighting for his life in hospital
What happens to children left in hot cars?
Children’s bodies heat up three-to-five times faster than adults do
The younger the child, the more vulnerable they are
On a 29C day, temperatures inside a car can reach 44C in just ten minutes
This can cause ‘serious injury’ and brain damage
After 20 minutes, the temperature reaches a fatal 60.2C, which could kill
Winding down the windows or parking in the shade will do little as it doesn’t affect the car’s core temperature
It is understood a bystander performed CPR on the child until paramedics arrived.
Witnesses said the mother was inconsolable as efforts were made to save her son.
The incident comes less than a month after the state government launched its Never Leave Kids in Cars campaign.
Last month, paramedics revealed they were called eight times to children being left locked in hot cars across Victoria as temperatures hit a scorching 40C.
Upon launching the campaign, Victorian health minister Jenny Mikakos said more than 30 Victorians a week — mainly babies and toddlers — were having to be rescued from vehicles.
On Thursday, Ms Mikakos said almost 1,500 children were left in vehicles in Victoria in the first 11 months of last year.
Kaija Millar (pictured) is due to appear in court on January 23. Easton is being cared for by his father, sources say
Speaking to Daily Mail Australia in November, Dr Dilip Dhupelia, the president of the Australian Medical Association’s Queensland branch, had a dramatic warning for parents: ‘It is never OK to leave a child in the car.’
‘Some people have this false sense of protection – ‘it’s only 10 minutes, I’ll leave the window open four or five centimetres’,’ Dr Dhupelia said.
‘It doesn’t stop the temperature rising.’
The doctor said the mercury can rise so fast in just 10 minutes in the car, that heatstroke and seizures can occur.
Heatstroke is where children’s bodies fail to properly regulate their temperature and can occur rapidly after their body temperature passes 40 degrees.
‘A child can become dizzy, it can become confused, it can become very agitated,’ Dr Dhupelia said.
Their organs then begin to shut down.
‘Then they have seizures, and the seizures can lead to a loss of consciousness and death.
Study: A 2008 Ambulance Victoria experiment found temperatures inside a car on a 29 degree day, doubled from 20C to 44C in ten minutes – which could cause ‘serious injury’
The 14-month-old was fighting for life after being was found unconscious in a car parked outside a pub (pictured)