1-Year-Old Dies After Being Left in Hot Car in North Carolina Shopping Center

A 1-year-old baby died after being left in a hot car at a shopping center parking lot in North Carolina, police said.

Officers received a call before 5 p.m. on Aug. 29. from McMullen Creek Shopping Center in Pineville, Charlotte.

There, they found a baby boy inside a vehicle parked next to Lowe’s Home Improvement on 10625 McMullen Creek Pkwy. The infant was in a carseat, Fox 46 reported. Officials did not say exactly how long the boy was in the car, but investigators said it was a “prolonged period,” reported WSOC-TV.

The baby was taken to Atrium Pineville where he was declared dead, the outlet reported.

“Every life-saving measure was attempted but unfortunately failed,” Pineville Police Lt. Corey Copley said, Fox 46 reported.

Police said the mother forgot her son was in the car and left him there while she went to work at a store in the shopping center, WSOCTV reported, and that it was the mother who called 911.

Temperatures that day reached the mid-80s.

Police said the investigation, which includes talking to family members, witnesses, and reviewing surveillance footage, is still ongoing. Officials did not release the mother or the child’s name. Police said the woman has been cooperative.

“We are not going to rush to judgment right now we are just going to keep all options open and see where this investigation leads,” Copley said, adding that parents should “do something to remind [them]” that there is a child in their car.

“I know we all have busy lives we are all doing something,” Copley said. “Do something to remind you. Take a shoe off and throw it in the back seat. Anything to remind yourself that you have precious cargo on board.”

Mother Arrested After Leaving Baby Inside Hot Car at Parking Lot

Earlier this month in Arizona, a mother of four was arrested after she admitted to leaving her baby in a hot car while she shopped at Target with her three other children, police said.

Officers responded to reports on Aug. 13 of a baby crying and sweating inside the locked vehicle at a store parking lot in Chandler, AZ Central reported.

The baby was rescued after one of the callers broke the car window, as instructed by a 911 dispatcher, and removed the baby. Firefighters who later arrived at the scene determined the infant had high blood pressure, but was otherwise fine, the outlet reported.

Target’s surveillance footage shows Holli Platt, 39, arriving at a Target located on 3777 S. Arizona Ave., at 4:07 p.m. She entered the store with three of her children a minute later and left the infant alone inside the car.

Police determined that the baby was in the car for about 18 minutes while temperatures outside were at 112 degrees. They estimated the temperature inside the vehicle rose by about 25 degrees during the time span, the news outlet reported.

Platt told police she had accidentally left her baby inside the car because she was busy with her three other children. She was arrested and charged with child abuse.

NTD Photo
A mug shot of Holli Platt, 39, who told Chandler police that she was busy with her other three children that she forgot her baby inside a hot car. (Chandler Police Department)

Hot Car Deaths

Heatkills.org, citing the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said that when outdoor temperatures range between 80 and 100 degrees, the interior of the car can get to 130 to 172 degrees.

“Children have died in cars with the temperature as low as 63 degrees. Basically, the car becomes a greenhouse. At 70 degrees on a sunny day, after a half hour, the temperature inside a car is 104 degrees. After an hour, it can reach 113 degrees,” stated Jan Null, adjunct professor at San Francisco State University, according to the website.

The NoHeatStroke.org website says 803 children have died in the United States due to heatstroke in hot cars since 1998. All of these deaths were preventable, the website said.

“The atmosphere and the windows of a car are relatively ‘transparent’ to the sun’s shortwave radiation and are warmed little. However, this shortwave energy does heat objects that it strikes. For example, a dark dashboard, steering wheel, or seat temperatures often are in the range of 180 to over 200 degrees F,” it stated.

Annually, about 38 children under the age of 15 die from heatstroke after being left in a vehicle, says Injury Facts.

CNN wire and Epoch Times reporter Jack Phillips contributed to this report.