Awareness Heightens for Children Left in Hot Cars

By: Gabrielle Sarann Email
By: Gabrielle Sarann Email

Valdosta, Georgia - August 15, 2011

It was 95 degrees in Valdosta on Monday. But in mere minutes the temperature in a car can soar to deadly levels.

"It is extremely hot and you should never leave your child in the car," says Vernotis Williams, an officers with the Valdosta Police Department.

Last Sunday, Julianne Ingram, 21, was arrested for leaving her baby in the car for 30 minutes while she stopped in the Lowndes County Jail.

"Julianne, she's a good mother.," says her father, who doesn't want to be identified. "She's young but she's a good mother."

Williams explains, "You don't even leave your child in the car to run and get gas, to go into the store and purchase an item. To go pick up a check from your job."

But if this happens and you notice a child left in a vehicle, look for signs of heat exhaustion.

"If you tap on the window and the child doesn't open their eyes and look toward you," says Williams. "If you look and see the child is sweating so hard or panting in that type of way, then the same general signs that you would see an adult show the child's gonna show."

Police say If you see a child left in a car, it's not illegal to bust open the window to remove them. But they stress to always call 911 first.

Charges filed against a parent who commits this offense, includes endangerment, neglect and even involuntary manslaughter.

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