The grieving wife of a man charged over the deaths of their one-year-old twins has said she’s standing by her husband.
Heartbroken Marissa Rodriquez told TV host Dr Phil how her war veteran husband Juan called her in a fit of panic after he found their lifeless bodies in his roasting car in the Bronx, New York City.
Tragic toddlers Luna and Phoenix had been locked in Juan’s 42-degree heated car while he was at work in July this year, The Sun reports.
The children’s devastated dad, 39, mistakenly believed he had dropped them off at day care on his way to work, he later told police.
But the helpless twins died of heatstroke after being left in the stifling vehicle all day – while temperatures outside soared to 30 degrees.
Marissa is struggling to come to terms with the loss, but despite authorities blaming Juan over the boys’ deaths, she has vowed to stick by him.
In her interview with Dr Phil, she explains why she has vowed to support her husband.
And Marissa also tells how she wants other parents to learn from the tragedy.
Previously, she told NBC New York: “This was a horrific accident, and I need him by my side to go through this together.
“Though I am hurting more than I ever imagined possible, I still love my husband.
“He is a good person and great father, and I know he would’ve never done anything to hurt our children intentionally.”
In a clip released ahead of the Dr Phil interview, which is being aired on Thursday, Marissa also explained how she was at work when Juan called her to give her the shattering news.
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Fighting back tears, she said: “My husband called me, I was working. The first call was about 4 or so.
“He told me, ‘All right, it’s your turn to pick up the kids’.
“He was going to a military event and he generally brought the kids to day care, but we switched on who picked them up.
“I said, ‘No problem, I’ll pick them up. I was still working for another hour at least.
“I got on the phone with a client. He called my cell phone back again and I just ignored it because I was working.
‘I realised he had left me a voicemail, which he doesn’t normally do.
“He called again. I got off the phone and I heard him say that they were gone.”
Juan had served in Iraq before leaving the military to work at the Veterans Association hospital.
Witnesses said he screamed out “I killed my babies” after returning to the Honda Accord from the hospital to see his sons’ bodies on July 26.
He was later arrested and has since been charged with second-degree manslaughter, criminally negligent homicide and child endangerment.
Juan, who sobbed alongside Marissa as their sons were laid to rest dressed as angels in August, has pleaded not guilty to his charges and is out on a $US100,000 ($A145,000) bond.
The dad has two older children from a previous marriage who also live at home.
Family and friends say he is a devoted dad who has already suffered enough.
His lawyer Joey Jackson said in August: “Mr Rodriguez is heart-wrenched and heartbroken.”
This article originally appeared on The Sun and was reproduced with permission
Originally published as Mum whose twins died in hot car speaks