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Man found with children in hot car pleads guilty to child abuse

A 59-year-old man pleaded guilty on Monday to child abuse for allowing his children to stay in a hot car in a desert area near Henderson while he was intoxicated.

Police found Brian Laugeson on the morning of July 24 with his two children, ages 3 and 4, while investigating a missing persons report, according to the Henderson Police Department. The three were going in and out of consciousness and were suffering from possible heat exhaustion in the car, police have said.

Laugeson pleaded guilty on Monday to two counts of child abuse, neglect or endangerment, during a brief court hearing in front of District Judge Carli Kierny. Attorneys stipulated that Laugeson could serve probation, meaning if a judge does not sentence him to probation, he could withdraw his plea.

According to an arrest report, Laugeson’s wife told police that she had not heard from him or the children, who were with Laugeson for the weekend. When Laugeson was found in the car, its windows were cracked while the outside temperature reached 105 degrees, police said.

There was also human feces in the backseat and “random articles of children’s clothing,” the report said.

Laugeson also faced a separate child abuse charge in Henderson after his 3-year-old son was found riding a scooter towards a busy street in May and a neighbor called police. As part of the guilty plea, prosecutors agreed to drop the additional charge.

Prosecutors have previously said that Laugeson was suspected of being under the influence of methamphetamine when he was found in the desert with his children.

Laugeson remained in the Clark County Detention Center on Monday. He is scheduled for a sentencing hearing on Dec. 18.

Contact Katelyn Newberg at knewberg@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0240.

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