This is the shocking moment a Utah father dumped his five-year-old daughter on a college campus and left her to fend for herself - with nothing but a blanket in 3-degree temperatures.

CCTV footage from the grounds of Ogden-Weber Applied Technology College, north of Salt Lake City, early Thursday morning shows the heartless father dropping his little girl outside one of the university buildings around 5am with a blanket. He then left and did not return.

According to the child's mother: "(He) told her to shut up, and lay down and go to sleep."

It wasn't until 7.30am that morning that the girl was found by campus security.

Temperatures in the area dropped to 3 degrees on the night of the incident. Photo / Fox13
Temperatures in the area dropped to 3 degrees on the night of the incident. Photo / Fox13

The girl's mother, identified only as Gena to protect the identity of the child, said her daughter was staying with her ex-husband and his family at the time of the incident.

Gena said the little girl has been left traumatised by what happened.

"She said she got scared," she told Fox 13 Salt Lake City.

"She was yelling, 'Daddy!' but no one was there. She said she just kind of had her blanket and waited until daylight."

Fred Frazier, the security manager for the college, said the girl did what she was told and stayed in the one spot.

The girl's mother said her daughter ran towards the security officer crying upon seeing him in the morning, but fell and grazed her knee while running.

"It was heartbreaking for (the security guard)," Frazier said.

"To see a little girl running alone by herself. That's when he got very concerned, and she was shivering and cold."

Temperatures in the area dropped to 3degrees on the night of the incident.

Ogden police are now waiting to interview the father and determine why he abandoned his child. Police say it may have been drug-related.

He is facing child abandonment or abuse charges, or both.

The girl's mother said she had tried to file a protective against her ex on behalf of her daughter, however it was denied by the courts.