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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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Matt on Aug 16, 2011 at 05:58 AM
    The charges filed against someone leaving a child in a hot car to die weigh on several factors. If you accidentally left your child in your 2011 BMW SUV while you put in a 12-hour day trying to make partner at the law firm, no charges. If you accidentally left your child in your 1989 Ford Taurus while you put in a 12-hour day at McDonald's so you don't get fired, they'll throw the book at you.
  • by brainer Location: TLH on Aug 16, 2011 at 05:39 AM
    So when we were all kids and got left in cars while our parents ran errands, how come we didn't die of heat stroke? My parents would park in the shade and roll the windows down. Sure it was hot, but it was no hotter than if we'd be sitting under a tree, and no one worried about us then. I understand that this COULD BE a dangerous situation, but why all the hysteria?? I have two small children and I think it's perfectly safe for them to stay in the car with the A/C on while I run into the gas station. It's this hysteria that makes me worried about getting arrested and charged with child abuse for keeping my kids in the car while I walk up to the ATM to get money. All situations are not created equal and I wish the media and citizens would recognize that. cops gonna start breaking into houses that don't have A/C? I grew up here and we didn't have A/C in the car or the house. Part of me wishes this hysteria exsisted back then to force my cheapskate dad to fix the A/C!!
  • by a mama on Aug 16, 2011 at 05:17 AM
    Stupid people, I would never leave my son in a hot car. He's too important for me to put his life at risk.
  • by amused on Aug 15, 2011 at 07:39 PM
    Anonymous, you must lead a very boring life , or you live your life just to make comments.I notice you are on every post your comments here articel
  • by Anonymous on Aug 15, 2011 at 05:30 PM
    I often leave my child in the car with out a problem. But then,she is 42 years old and can let the window down or start the car and run the A C.
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