North Carolina Foster Mother Charged in 1-Year-Old’s Death

The Associated Press
By The Associated Press
September 5, 2019US News
North Carolina Foster Mother Charged in 1-Year-Old’s Death
Reacquired Volkswagen and Audi diesel cars sit in a desert graveyard near Victorville, Calif., on March 28, 2018. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

PINEVILLE, N.C.—Authorities are charging a North Carolina foster mother in the death of a 1-year-old boy who was left inside a hot car in a shopping center parking lot.

News outlets report Pineville police say warrants charge 42-year-old Dawn Aberson-Vanden Broecke with involuntary manslaughter. Police say Broecke has cooperated with investigators and is expected to turn herself in to police.

Dawn Aberson-Vanden Broecke, of North Carolina, was charged on Sept. 3 with involuntary manslaughter in the case, reported the Charlotte Observer.

The boy, who was not named, was found in his car seat in a car parked at a Lowe’s store at the McMullen Creek Market shopping center on Pineville-Matthews Road. The Mecklenburg County Medical Examiner’s Office later ruled of died of hyperthermia.

According to police, officers responding to a 911 call last Thursday found the child unresponsive in his child seat. They said the woman had left the baby in the car and gone to work at a store at the shopping center. Police said the child had been left in the car “for a prolonged period.”

Emergency personnel performed life-saving measures, but the baby was pronounced dead at a hospital.

Children Heatstroke Deaths

According to Kids and Cars, 132 children died from non-traffic fatalities in 2018. Of those, 52 died from heatstroke. The data was for children 14 years old or younger.

According to the No Heat Stroke organization, 32 child vehicular heatstroke deaths have taken place so far this year and 829 have taken place since 1998.

In an examination of the causes of the deaths conducted by the group, it was found that 54 percent of the deaths stemmed from a caregiver forgetting the child. Another 26 percent of deaths came after a child gained access to the car on their own, while about 19 percent of the deaths came after they were knowingly left by a caregiver in the vehicle.
Cars stuck in traffic
A traffic jam on westbound Interstate 10 (I-10) in New Orleans, La., on Sept. 14, 2018. (Mario Villafuerte/File photo via Getty Images)
The U.S. National Safety Council said that caregivers can be aware of the deaths and take action. “Parents and caregivers can act immediately to end these deaths. Even on relatively mild days, temperatures inside vehicles still can reach life-threatening levels in minutes, and cracking the window doesn’t help,” the council stated on its website.
Epoch Times Jack Phillips Contributed to this report.
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