Infant Found In Hot Vehicle Dies In Local Hospital, Autopsy Ordered
An autopsy was ordered after an infant who was found in a hot vehicle died in a local hospital.
Reporter: Rachel Cox

WACO (July 6, 2011)—An autopsy was ordered after a 9-month-old infant who was found unresponsive in a hot minivan in Bellmead died at a Waco hospital.

The infant’s mother called 911 at around 1 p.m. Tuesday after discovering the unresponsive child, whom she had left in the minivan at the Delta Inn at 1320 Behrens Circle, police said.

She told officers she shopped for auto parts earlier in the day and then went to the hotel to meet a family friend who was going to fix the vehicle, police said.

The infant was left in the minivan for about 25 minutes along with an older sister, whose age wasn’t available, police said.

The infant, whose body temperature was 107 degrees, police said, was pronounced dead at Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center.

Highs in the area Tuesday afternoon were at or above 100 degrees

"When it gets up to 107 degrees the child is going to stop crying and maybe even go to sleep and unfortunately not wake up because their body is going to start shutting down, they will stop sweating, and by the time they're found its too late," Sofie Martinez of the Waco Police Department said.

Martinez says the child may even be cold to the touch because the body has started to shut down.

McLennan County Justice of the Peace Kristi DeCluitt, who ordered the autopsy, said she was told the infant may have had congenital health problems that contributed to the death.

She said she doesn’t expect final results of the autopsy for at least two months, however.

She said the windows of the minivan were down, but said the air conditioning was not on.

The Texas Department of Family Protective Services says six children have died in hot cars so far this year in Texas. There's been almost 20 child deaths nation-wide, and in the past decade over half of those deaths happened when a child was left in a car and completely forgotten about.