WEST CARSON (CBSLA) — June Love Agosto’s mother said she left her 2-year-old alone overnight in a car.
This evening, the child’s father, who was co-parenting the toddler with his ex, spoke out about his palpable grief and anger.
June’s father — Gary Agosto — had a bunch of nicknames for his little girl.
“Juniper, when I was mad at her I’d call her Junio,” he says.
But mostly they called her Baby June and Baby. And a baby in everyone’s memory she will remain.
The child’s mother was in court Friday charged with her neglect and murder.
According to a disturbing LA County Coroner’s report, 34-year-old Lacey Mazzarella told deputies she went drinking with a friend and left the baby alone in a car — with the heater running — overnight.
The next morning, Mazzarella said she found June unresponsive and covered in vomit.
The report also said the toddler arrived at the hospital in full cardiac arrest with suspected burns to her face, chest and arms.
When the details roll around in the father’s head, it’s almost too much to recount.
“Just to think how bad my daughter suffered,” Agosto says.
He told reporter Perez that he is, of course, furious with his ex — but he’s also mad at the system.
According to Connecticut state police records, Mazzarella was arrested in a 2013 drug bust where police raided her home and found a 3-year-old on a bed where powdered cocaine was also later found. There was also other medicine and razor blades near the child.
“I was trying to tell the court system, I was trying to tell DCF, they just wouldn’t listen unless I finalized court papers,” Agosto says.
He says he was trying to do just that on the day he got the call telling him that Baby June was dead.
Agosto held her funeral service yesterday and he made sure to include lots of balloons, flowers and Mickey Mouse.
She couldn’t talk much yet but what she could say is now ironically, painfully relevant.
June could say “I miss you.”
“She knew that from me like when I would talk to her I’d be like I miss you, she really understood I miss you,” Agosto says.
Agosto says his ex has not reached out to him or his family since the tragedy occurred. And he says, from the time she was arrested she did not attend or ask to attend any service for June.
Mazzaralla has pleaded not guilty and is being held on a $1.1 million bail.