Family Forgot 8-month-old in Car for 10 Hours
According to the Washington Post, no one at the day care noticed that the 8-month-old was never taken out his car seat in the family SUV when the rest of his siblings were dropped off Wednesday morning.
No one at home noticed the boy there when the car was driven back to the family’s house a short time later, reported the Post.
And no one at the Wal-Mart parking lot, not even the boy’s grandmother, who drove the car to her job at the retail chain, saw that he was still inside, slouched in his car seat through the heat of the day.
It wasn’t until 5:30 p.m., nearly 10 hours after he should have arrived at day care, that anyone noticed the boy was missing. When his frantic grandmother went out to check the SUV, she found the infant’s body in the back seat.
“It’s a very difficult thing,” Lt. Vince Yakopovich of the Macedonia, Ohio, Police Department told the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
Police are not releasing the names of the victim or his family until all family members have been notified.
According to the Plain Dealer, a man, whose relationship to the child was not given, drove the boy and his three siblings to day care at 7:45 a.m. Wednesday morning. The rest of the children were dropped off, but the infant — strapped into a car seat in the third row of a Buick Rendezvous — was apparently forgotten. The man drove the car back to the family home, parked and went inside, unaware of the small child still sitting in the back.
About three hours later, the child’s grandmother drove the car to the local Wal-Mart where she worked. For more than six hours, the red SUV remained in the vast parking lot of the shopping center where the Wal-Mart was located.
“The poor baby couldn’t help itself, and you would’ve thought somebody would’ve seen the baby walking by the car, see a baby in the car seat and reported it,” Pat Haralson, who was shopping at Wal-Mart on Wednesday, told local NBC affiliate WKYC.
At 5:30 p.m., when the baby’s three siblings arrived home from day care without their brother, the child’s mother called his grandmother — and the police — in a panic. That’s when the older women went outside to check her car.
The boy was pronounced dead at 5:45 p.m., according to WKYC.
The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports that police don’t believe the boy was intentionally harmed. An autopsy will be performed Thursday.
“There was a large crowd here before and they were shocked,” Yakopovich said, speaking from the scene. “We’re all shocked. It’s a tragedy.”