Child found dead in hot car
Posted: Jun 14, 2010 7:18 AM PDT
Updated: Jun 14, 2010 7:25 AM PDT

Franklin County Sheriff investigates child's death

RUSSELLVILLE, AL (WAFF) - The Franklin County Sheriff's Office is investigating a young child's death.

Officials said he could have suffocated because of the heat.

It happened Sunday afternoon around 3:30 on County Road 144 near Russellville.

They said the call originally came out as a missing child.

When deputies got to the home, they found the boy in a car on a back floor board.

The child's body was transported to Huntsville for an autopsy.

The identity of the boy has not been released.

4-year-old dies in car from heat

By Tom Smith
Senior Staff Writer

Published: Monday, June 14, 2010 at 4:00 p.m.
Last Modified: Monday, June 14, 2010 at 4:14 p.m.
RUSSELLVILLE -- Franklin County authorities say preliminary autopsy results received today indicate a 4-year-old boy found Sunday afternoon inside his family’s parked car died from hyperthermia.

William Dylen Mahaffey was found on the backseat floorboard of a car parked at the family’s residence on Marie Lane, which is in the Waco community east of Russellville, Franklin County Sheriff Larry Plott said.

Plott said what started as a death investigation was determined to be an accidental death after autopsy results revealed the child died from extreme heat.

Sunday afternoon’s temperature reach 95 degrees. Experts said the temperature inside an enclosed vehicle could have reached 150 degrees.

Family members contacted the sheriff’s department around 3:30 p.m. after they could not find the boy, who went outside to play three hours earlier.

Plott said a deputy found the boy.

“The family had apparently been looking for him an hour or so before they called us,” the sheriff said. “On missing person’s cases, we always go to the house and start looking. That’s what we did and the deputy looked into the car and saw the little boy in the floorboard.”

Plott said the deputy found the boy about 10 minutes after they got the call.