Yet another baby dies in hot car while its father is off doing who knows what, while another baby clings to life after spending an hour in a locked car. Two separate incidents, both reported in Indiana, where record-high temperatures of 104 degrees blistered the area, illustrate just how criminally stupid these parents are.
In the first incident, 18-year-old father Joshua Stryzanski was arrested after his three-month-old daughter was found dead in his locked car near Indianapolis. The charge was neglect of a dependent resulting in death. Given the youth of the father, one has to wonder if he left her to die on purpose. How could he possibly not understand that the heat would most certainly kill his helpless infant? The big question isÂ—what was going through his mind when he left his little infant in the car? Did he do it on purpose? Where was he going and what was he doing to make him leave his own child to die like that?
Not far from where Stryzanski neglected his child until she literally cooked to death, 30-year-old Meg Trueblood parked her SUV in front of discount store Simpy Chic, so she could hit the bargain racks. An hour later, some passersby noticed that she had left her 16-month-old daughter in the vehicle and called police. The windows were smashed out and the child was thankfully still alive, but she suffered a heat-related seizure before paramedics could arrive. The baby is still in critical condition at Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital in Indianapolis.
Police arrested Trueblood and charged her with felony neglect of a child, too. Interestingly, police said that the mother didn’t seem “fully coherent.” Because police didn’t go into detail about what this meant, it only makes you wonderÂ—was this woman on drugs when she went to go shopping? Is she mentally ill? Was she so distraught at her mistake that she was rendered speechless? Did she think that the car would remain cool for a while because she’d been running the air conditioning? What the hell was this woman thinking?
She probably wanted just a few child-free minutes to shop without being bothered by her pesky child. After all, what mother doesn’t want a few free minutes? But at the risk of her kid’s life? Who chooses shopping over her child’s health, and possibly life?
What more can be done before another baby dies in hot car from hyperthermia? Already this year, at least ten children have died as a result of being left in a hot car, and more will die if something isn’t done to prevent it. Since 1998, 537 children have died because their parents left them in cars in the sweltering heat.
The largest percentage of those deaths were children under three months old, at 30 percent of the deaths reported. The next age group with the highest death rate was children who were one-year old at 23 percent of the total deaths. Children as old as four years old have been left to die in hot cars in the last 14 years. Four years old! An interesting study shows the possible correlation between the change in preference of putting young children in the back seat as opposed to securing them in the front seat, as was standard practice until air bags became popular in the early 1990s. In fact, the incidents of babies dying in cars has increased tenfold since this change was made.
Does this mean parents should put their kids in the front seats again? Not necessarily. It means that cars should have some kind of alarm system to alert them that they are forgetting a child in the back seat before they leave the car. Either a blinking light, a noisy alarm, or even disabling the locks on the cars. Something needs to be done.
As a little 16-month-old girl fights for her life, her mother is living in her own hell knowing that for the price of a dress, she very nearly killed her own daughter. As for the 18-year-old kid who essentially murdered his child in a hot car, he’s got a lifetime ahead of him to think about the horrible mistake he made, as well.
Â©2012 Reno Berkeley for Gather News.