Hot Car Deaths 2019

Discussion in 'Up to the Minute' started by Knitty, Jun 25, 2019.

  1. Knitty

    Knitty Well-Known Member

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    I hope it's okay to put this here:

    4/4/2019 Richard Wighard, 14 months, Melbourne FL
    ‘Hot car death:’ Palm Bay mom booked after baby dies during search for cocaine, pot
    "Detectives said Hartman had left her child in the car alone as she drank with a friend at a bar the night before.

    Police said that after leaving the bar, Hartman spent the overnight hours meeting with several people. She turned up later at a North Melbourne home where she left the child in the car alone for up to six hours as she went inside and smoked marijuana."

    4/10/19 Joy Monell-Merritt, 2, Perdido Key FL
    Escambia County mother charged in death of toddler
    "The Escambia County Sheriff's Office (ECSO) says the child, Joy Monell, was found dead in a white minivan around 4 p.m. ... An arrest report says the child had been with family members the day before and was picked up by Monell around 12:30 a.m. Wednesday.

    4/22/2019 Girl, 18 months, Glendale AZ [They didn't even give the name, and I can't find any updates later than this article]
    Autopsy planned for toddler who died after being found in car in Glendale
    "The girl's parents are still cooperating with detectives, and it has been determined that the father was the last person to drive the family vehicle, Ngalula explained.

    Police have not formally submitted any charges, and the parents will not be identified at this time, Ngalula stated.

    The girl's body was found inside the car by her father Monday evening; he then called the police and gave her CPR until the paramedics arrived, Ngalula said in a press conference Monday."

    5/2/2019 Kaiden Logan, 9 months, Boomer NC
    Baby dies after NC mom ‘knowingly’ left him in car while at work, sheriff says
    "Deputies were called to the hospital and soon learned Rodgers “knowingly left the child in an unattended parked car while she was at work,” the report states. The baby was in the vehicle for several hours, according to deputies.

    Rodgers was arrested and charged with one count each of murder and felony child abuse."

    5/22/2019 Zion Akinrefon, 4, Columbia SC
    'A horrible, tragic accident': 4-year-old dies in hot car in Richland County
    "The child, identified as 4-year-old Zion Akinrefon, wandered back into his family's car after he and his family got out.

    The 4-year-old, who is from Maryland, was reportedly in town for a family visit.

    He was found unresponsive in the backseat by his mother, who noticed the child was missing and began a search. According to a report, Akinrefon was last seen watching TV and made it to the car through the house's side door."

    6/2/2019 Joseline Eichelberger, 11 months, Calverton Park, MO
    Parents of 11-month-old who died inside hot car in Calverton Park charged with manslaughter
    "Matthew Eichelberger, 27, and Candace Rucker, 24, were charged with second-degree involuntary manslaughter in connection to the death of their 11-month old daughter, Joseline Eichelberger.

    Her body was found about 4:30 p.m. Sunday, June 2, at the family's home in the 100 block of Anistasia Drive. The infant was left in the car for at least 12 hours and died from the excessive heat, court documents allege."

    6/8/2019 Girl, 3 months, Butler County KS [Haven't been able to find a name]
    3-month-old baby dies after mom left her in car for over 3 hours, Kansas sheriff says
    "Investigators determined that the 44-year-old mother had taken her daughter with her to a baby shower, and she came home at around 12:30 p.m., Herzet said. The mom was tired and went in the house, gave other children chores to do and took a nap.

    The woman woke up about three and a half hours later and remembered she forgot the baby in the car, Herzet said. The girl was lethargic and was not breathing, so she called 911. Butler County paramedics, two deputies and Rose Hill firefighters responded."

    6/20/2019 Kaysen Neyland, 4, Providence Village TX
    4-year-old dies after being found in hot car
    "He was found outside a home just before 5 p.m. when temperatures were in the mid-90's. According to CBS DFW, it is still unknown how long Neyland was in the car before being found. "

    6/22/2019 Boy, 18 months, Galveston TX [Another unnamed child]
    1-year-old boy dies after being left inside hot truck in Galveston
    "That's where a parent arrived around 11 a.m., but with a 1-year-old boy still inside the truck.

    The parent returned to Chevrolet Tahoe around 4 p.m." [Parent was at work, baby was in car outside work]

    13 children dead already this year. I'm just sick.
     


  2. MsFacetious

    MsFacetious What a Kerfuffle...

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  3. Knitty

    Knitty Well-Known Member

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    Realized that I broke my document, and lost some of the listings I had, so here are the ones I lost:

    5/4/2019 Riley Taylor, 4, St. Paul MN
    Family of child left in hot car calls boy's death 'a tragic mistake'
    "While working an event inside the stadium, St. Paul police allege Taylor checked on his son at 11:30 a.m but not again until 5:15 p.m. and by then Riley was unresponsive. ...Relatives and friends say their presence in court Friday was a show of support for Taylor.

    They applauded the judge's decision to lower Taylor's bond from $25,000 down to $10,000. It allowed Taylor be released from jail late Friday afternoon so he can be with Riley's mom and together grieve the death of their son."

    5/6/2019 Girl, 21 months, Lakewood Township NJ [Another child unnamed]
    21-month-old left in hot car and died — Lakewood mom charged
    "A law enforcement source told NBC New York that the child's mother took her to daycare, but the toddler didn't want to go in — so she took the child home. But the source told NBC New York there was then a miscommunication about when the child's mother or father would take her inside."

    5/11/2019 Malia Mae Martin, 18 months, Lake Havasu AZ
    Lake Havasu City man arrested after infant dies in hot car
    "Police say Martin left his infant unattended in a car for 45 minutes to an hour while he went to visit a friend, according to a news release. ... police searched the home of 23-year-old Noah Grabowski, the friend Martin was visiting. Inside, police say investigators found marijuana plants and other related items. Grabowski faces charges of possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of marijuana and cultivation of marijuana."

    5/22/2019 Brooklyn Isaac, 4 months, Jacksonville FL
    FLORIDA HOT CAR BABY DEATH: Mother of infant found dead in van outside of Jacksonville day care speaks out on social media
    "The child died after police say she was left in a van at the Ewing's Love & Hope Preschool & Academy for about five hours under the Florida sun on Wednesday.
    DCF tells us the day care was not licensed to transport children."

    The child who died 6/22/2019 in Galveston has now been named: Ryan Pena.
     
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  4. Knitty

    Knitty Well-Known Member

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  5. Knitty

    Knitty Well-Known Member

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    Meanwhile, there have been two additional deaths, bringing the total to 15, 16 if the Indiana case is truly a hot car death and not something even more nefarious.

    6/21/2019, Mia Villegas, 11 months, Bardwell TX
    11-month-old dies after being left in hot car in Ellis County, authorities say | Ellis County | Dallas News
    "Authorities didn't say how long the girl was left inside the vehicle."

    6/27/2019 Boy, 3, Morristown TN
    3-year-old Tennessee child reported missing found dead in van hours later
    "The report said the child had last been seen around 4 p.m. and was suspected to have wandered outside the home."
     
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  6. MsArk

    MsArk Well-Known Member

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    How tragic we have an entire thread here on hot car deaths. I just do not get it. Why is this so prevalent?
     
  7. AlwaysShocked

    AlwaysShocked Well-Known Member

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    I am ALWAYS suspicious when I read of these deaths. Only the one where the 4 year old went outside on his own and climbed into the family car sounds like a true accident.

    The rest of them are very, very PREVENTABLE "accidents" if not outright negligence. The father who had deliberately left his child in the car outside his place of work because he did not have any childcare in place, came out and checked on the child at 11:30am and then not again until hours and hours later? That's no accident, that's negligence.

    The mother who took a 21 month old to daycare, child "refused" to go in so mother returned child to family home and apparently place the child into another car to be picked up by someone else. Someone else who didn't get there until the child was already dead. That's no accident, that's negligence!

    I wonder if it would be of help for our laws to be changed to making it a crime for ANY child to EVER be left alone in a vehicle? Because the numbers seem to be rising, despite the ongoing educational campaigns of the past few years.

    eta: Further research shows that 19 states already have such a law.
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2019
  8. Leilei

    Leilei Blue Star Mom Times Two

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    I've known the parents and grandmother of the the little boy in Morristown for around seven years, through a military-related FB group. They are truly heartbroken, and I do believe that it was a tragic accident, although there is some negligence there, as well, but it wasn't willful negligence. He was a very curious little boy, all of the kids are. Social media has crucified the parents and the grandmother, and they're shattered. As far as the latest one, the one year-old twins, I have a feeling that this was intentional. Just my opinion.
     
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  9. 10ofRods

    10ofRods Verified Medical Anthropologist

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    News article about the twins:

    July 26, 2019. The Bronx.
    Twins found dead in hot car in Bronx after father forgot them

    Does this make 17 and 18?

    I wonder if Europe, with its extraordinary heatwave, has similar numbers (per population with cars of course). We do have way more cars in the US. Will we see increasing numbers of dead children as people fail to adjust to ever increasing heat during the summer?

    I can remember being left in cars as a kid, with windows rolled down, usually with other kids. Never with windows up. But it used to be common and probably still is, in many places. Today, people leave their windows up due to fear of theft and kidnapping.

    Father in the above case was charged with criminally negligent homicide. He was 38 when the twins were born...
     
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  10. MsFacetious

    MsFacetious What a Kerfuffle...

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    https://nypost.com/2019/07/27/dad-w...social-worker-described-as-an-amazing-father/

    Watch this video. Watching this made me cry. This case is absolutely heart wrenching.

    Mother Of Twins Who Died In Hot Car Issues Statement Offering Support For Accused Husband

    I do not understand how anyone could look at him and say he did this on purpose or should go to prison. Nothing you can do to him is worse than the hell he will already be experiencing.

    YES, I KNOW what his babies experienced. He does too, he will know that every second of every day for the rest of his life. This man is devastated. I will be extremely surprised if he does not commit suicide. This reminds me of Gage's death and Paul's resulting suicide.

    This is a very long but very good article about Gage and Paul. The circumstances are different, yes. However the legal debate and heartbreak is very much the same.

    A Father's Pain, a Judge's Duty, and a Justice Beyond Their Reach

    As far as simply believing you have dropped off your child and being mistaken... or believing your spouse has them...

    THIS
    CAN
    HAPPEN
    TO
    ANYONE


    https://www.kidsandcars.org/2016/07...-car-is-a-horrifying-mistake-is-it-a-crime-2/

    I realize it is easier for people to say "It's MY CHILD I would NEVER FORGET MY CHILD." That's great if it helps you to sleep at night.

    However, I have accepted that all it takes is the perfect storm. Some of the most attentive, cautious, protective parents I've ever met, have nearly made this mistake! Even stay at home parents, who always take their children with them.

    A change in routine, not enough sleep, being sick, a death in the family, another traumatic event.... the list goes on and on. Any of these things can be just enough of a change in your routine. Just like when you do something but don't remember doing it, like part of your drive home for example.

    I have now made it a habit to open my back door every time I get out of the vehicle. 80% of the time I have my little guy with me and 100% of the time he's reminding me he's there! However, I've just made it a habit just in case. I am not better than any other parents out there, my situation just makes me less likely to be in a situation this will happen in because I stay at home.

    People believing it can never happen to them, is exactly why it keeps happening. Actual solutions in honor of these babies are the answer. There are so many great ideas.

    There are already airbags that shut off automatically if less than a certain weight is placed in the passenger seat. An alarm that goes off if the vehicle is turned off and locked, while weight is still in the child's car seat would be amazing. However it cannot be cost prohibitive or it won't do any good.

    There are safe mirrors you can attach to the headrest in the back so you can see your baby from the front. Daycare's ALWAYS calling if a baby doesn't show up especially from May-September could save lives. Parents checking in with the other parent... there are just so many options. We need to start educating parents about those options just like we do shaken baby syndrome.

    Okay, off my soap box. This is a particularly devastating one to me.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2019
  11. Laughing

    Laughing Rarely Speechless

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    MsFacetious, I agree. One idea is keeping a stuffed animal in the unoccupied car seat, moving the stuffed animal to the front seat each & every time the child is buckled in. Two kids in seats, 2 stuffed animals. If the driver can see the animal -- there is a car seat passenger.

    upload_2019-7-29_19-26-30.jpeg

    https://www.health.ucdavis.edu/publish/news/newsroom/13922

    Maybe that's my shower gift from now on???

    JMHO YMMV
     
  12. MsFacetious

    MsFacetious What a Kerfuffle...

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    We carry Nutbrown Hare with us for this reason. :)

    I'm amazed I haven't heard of this. This covers a lot of the issues people have been worried about with an alert system! I'm pretty impressed. No it's not perfect but it's pretty good.

    Clever Elly
     
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  13. gregjrichards

    gregjrichards Well-Known Member

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    Surely the car manufacturers must be able to come up with something to address this serious problem? It is a pity you can’t have the car alarm going off, hazard lights flashing and “warning child detected in vehicle” blasting on repeat over the car alarm and be unable to lock the car if a child is detected inside.
     
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  14. KariKae

    KariKae Well-Known Member

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    Seriously - we have an alarm on our swimming pool that detects underwater motion. What about some type of back seat motion detector? It could activate once a car temperature reaches a certain point.
     
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  15. StephanieH

    StephanieH Active Member

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    I almost left my son in the car. I got all the way to work and was getting out of my car to head in to the office before I realized my baby boy was asleep in his car seat. I had one diversion--I had to bring my daughter to a friend's house because she was ill. I then was supposed to circle back and bring my boy to day care. I completely forgot and went directly to work. It CAN HAPPEN to anyone.

    As an aside, I forgot my dog at doggie day care just today. I just forgot. ANd I am one of those people who never leaves my dog in the car, etc. But I got all the way home and then realized I never picked up Sundance. It happens!
     
  16. Laughing

    Laughing Rarely Speechless

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    Thank you for sharing your story! Glad everyone is safe, you, kids, & dog.

    JMHO YMMV
     
  17. gregjrichards

    gregjrichards Well-Known Member

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    1F140798-D993-4656-8DA3-7D77A9A2B877.jpeg

    Hyundai is marking National Heatstroke Prevention Day by announcing plans to make its rear occupant alert system standard on most new vehicles in the United States by 2022.

    Designed to prevent the tragic deaths of children accidentally left in vehicles during the summer, Hyundai’s rear occupant alert system comes in two different forms.

    The most basic is a door-logic system which detects if a rear door was opened or closed before the vehicle was started. Should this occur, the system will remind the driver to check the rear seats when they exit the vehicle.

    https://www.carscoops.com/2019/07/h...y-making-its-rear-door-alert-system-standard/

    I hope this kind of system comes to most car manufacturers. Hyundai should be congratulated for coming up with a helpful and potentially lifesaving system.
     
  18. MsFacetious

    MsFacetious What a Kerfuffle...

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    That's wonderful but we still need something inexpensive and easy for older vehicles. Most young parents aren't driving brand new vehicles.
     
  19. bwt42

    bwt42 Former Member

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    You can't cure stupid.
     
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  20. sl222

    sl222 Well-Known Member

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    This never used to happen when people could see their children. It also rarely happened when people were not so distracted. It is almost always someone who is life-overwhelmed and already has other children and let's be honest - is in over their head. They don't intend to kill a child but they also are not being careful and they are not focusing on their children. imho this could not happen to *anyone* because there are some people it would never, ever happen to. Some people are careful, are not distracted with life, and are also constantly thinking about their children because they honestly are more of the mind to be ecstatic about their children rather than thinking about a million other things. These people put safeguards in place. This doesn't have to happen. You would think more parents would go to lengths to make sure there is no child in the car EVERY time, particularly in hot weather months. It really is negligence not to stop and think; it is hard to say that it's okay for people to be on autopilot.

    One thing that gets me is that people often focus on how devastated a parent appears, particularly in this latest case, but they don't focus on the victim and what he or she endured. They're more concerned about sympathizing with the parent's pain than in justice for the horror and the loss of life of the innocent child.

    I sympathize for the hell a parent must go through after making this fatal error but it really does not have to happen and there truly should be automatic jail time of at least 6 months regardless of how bad someone feels, imho this *would* absolutely result in a sharp drop in these cases. JMO.
     
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