Sixth Heat-Related Car Death in Georgia
According to an online news article on CNN.com, a sixth heat-related car fatality of a child this year occurred in Georgia. The victim, a three-year-old boy, tragically died last Sunday after he was left in a hot car for almost three hours, a coroner's office reported. According to the National Safety Council, three hot car deaths have occurred so far in June. The outdoor temperatures have soared due to severe heat waves.
Each year, an average of 38 children under the age of fifteen tragically die from heatstroke after being left in a hot vehicle, the National Safety Council reports.
In the Columbus case, the boy had arrived at his home in an SUV with his grandmother and the other children at around 5:30 PM. According to a Muscogee County Coroner's Office report, they were arriving home after attending church and running errands. The grandmother stated to investigators that she thought all the kids exited her SUV when they arrived home. The grandmother then went to her bedroom. The victim's mother was working at the time of the incident.
About three hours later, the victim's uncle used the woman's SUV to go to Wendy's, and he was not aware that the young boy was sitting in the back seat. He parked the SUV and went inside the restaurant. He later received a phone call from the grandmother asking if the uncle had seen the boy. The uncle then discovered the boy in the SUV with "foam and blood coming from his mouth," and he called 911 for emergency medical help.
The child was described as "extremely hot to the touch" at the accident scene, the report stated, and the boy exhibited no signs of life. The boy's preliminary cause of death was listed as asphyxiation, according to Muscogee County Coroner Buddy Bryan. Temperatures in the Columbus area that day reached 96 degrees Fahrenheit.
Due to the events leading to the child's death, his body was sent to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation for autopsy. The autopsy results can take up to five months to finish. The incident is currently under investigation.
The Georgia Supreme Court recently overturned the murder conviction of a father who received a life sentence for the hot-car fatality of his 22-month-old son. In its 6-3 decision, the Georgia Supreme Court ruled that evidence submitted by prosecutors produced an unfair prejudicial impact on the jury.
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