'Parking Lot Barbara': Woman calls the police on mother sitting in car with her baby

Elise Solé


A woman called the police on a mother sitting in a car with her baby, and social media is wondering, is she racist or a concerned citizen?

Over the weekend, the hashtag #ParkingLotBarbara flew through Twitter due to a video featuring a California woman calling law enforcement on a mother and her baby who were sitting in their car. The woman was concerned, she said, because the child wasn’t properly shielded from the sun’s rays.

A woman — whom the internet named “Parking Lot Barbara” — called the police on a mother and her baby who were sitting in their car. (Screenshot: Twitter/@Blk_Hermione)
A woman — whom the internet named “Parking Lot Barbara” — called the police on a mother and her baby who were sitting in their car. (Screenshot: Twitter/@Blk_Hermione)

The footage starts with the woman admonishing the mother, “Because you told me it was ‘None of your business that your child is in pain,'” as she held a cellphone to her ear.

“She’s not in pain — she’s sleeping in her car seat,” replied the mother. “What are you doing? Tell everyone what you’re doing.”

The woman spoke into the phone, “I have this child here in this car at the PetSmart parking lot and the sun is kind of beating right at the baby’s face in the back seat. She’s still in a little car seat, I don’t know how old she is.”

“In the car with her!” insisted the mother. The woman answered, “No, you’re not, you’re out here yelling at me.”

The mother’s husband then emerged. “She says Elsie is in pain … because she’s sleeping in the sun…” said his partner.

The woman continued her call, “Now she’s outside yelling at me. She wasn’t in the car.” When she spotted the husband, the woman placed the call on hold and the mom exclaimed, “Oh, because he’s white? Because he’s white, it’s OK because he’s here now?”

“Because he’s acting sane — you’re screaming at me,” said the woman, adding that she hadn’t seen an adult present. Then she turned to the mother — who pointed out that she did see her — and scolded her, “One of us at a time.” The woman also told the mom, “It is my business when I mistakenly think the child is in distress.”

The husband then asked the woman to admit her mistake, and she replied, “Yes, I can see that she’s OK now.” She also insisted that she didn’t realize the baby’s father was white, due to his baseball hat and beard.

The people in the video are anonymous, but the video may have originated with the Twitter account @Blk_Hermione, which tweeted Saturday, “A California white woman calls the cops on [a] Hispanic mom who was sitting in her air-conditioned car with her baby. Why can’t these racists leave POC alone and mind their own damn business?”

@Blk_Hermione did not return Yahoo Lifestyle’s request for comment. It’s also unclear where in California the video was filmed (and a representative of the Los Angeles Police Department did not return Yahoo Lifestyle’s request for comment).

A majority of users on Twitter claimed the woman’s actions were racist and that she escalated a clearly innocent situation; others argued that she had good intentions and simply got confused.

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