Autopsy: Child left in hot car died of hyperthermia - Tucson News Now

Autopsy: Child left in hot car died of hyperthermia

Justin Ross Harris Justin Ross Harris
COBB COUNTY, GA (CBS46) -

Authorities have filed a new warrant against the father accused of leaving his child in a hot car while he was at work, raising questions about whether the act may have been intentional.

Justin Ross Harris is charged with felony murder and second-degree cruelty to children.

The Cobb County Medical Examiner's Office completed the autopsy June 19 and concluded the cause of 22-month-old Cooper's death was hyperthermia, a condition in which the temperature of the body spikes due to the heat, and the investigative information suggests the manner of death is homicide.

The medical examiner is waiting for toxicology test results before making an official ruling as to the cause and manner of death.

Harris, 34, was supposed to drop Cooper off at daycare, but said he forgot. He told police he drove to work at Home Depot around 9 a.m. Wednesday and left the toddler in the car.

It wasn't until Harris left work and started driving home that he said he looked in the backseat and saw the child still strapped in the car seat and unresponsive.

The new warrant states Harris placed Cooper into his car seat after eating at Chick-fil-A on Cumberland Parkway. The car seat was centered on the rear seat of his car.

Police said Harris then drove to work at Home Depot and left his son strapped into the vehicle while he entered work.

During lunch the warrant states Harris entered his vehicle through the driver's side door to place an object into the vehicle. He then closed the door and left the car, re-entering his place of business.

After work Harris left work and pulled over at a shopping center on Akers Mill Road asking for assistance with his child.

It was determined Cooper died after being left in the car for the day.

"The chain of events that occurred in this case does not point toward simple negligence and evidence will be presented to support this allegation," said Cobb County Police Chief John R. Houser in a statement. You can read the entire statement here.

CBS46 was told there are additional warrants in this case that could shed more light on what happened. Those documents have not yet been filed.

Harris remains in jail without bond. He will be back in court on July 3.

Copyright 2014 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

  • Local newsMore>>

  • Final: Purdue 89, Arizona 64

    Final: Purdue 89, Arizona 64

    Saturday, November 25 2017 1:32 AM EST2017-11-25 06:32:23 GMT

    The Cats fall by 25 and will return home from paradise winless at 0-3.

    The Cats fall by 25 and will return home from paradise winless at 0-3.

  • Officers talk about passion for life-saving DUI patrols

    Officers talk about passion for life-saving DUI patrols

    Saturday, November 25 2017 12:36 AM EST2017-11-25 05:36:05 GMT
    Source: Tucson News NowSource: Tucson News Now

    DUI enforcement has been increased for Thanksgiving, as law enforcement is trying to take impaired drivers off the streets. They started Wednesday, Nov. 22, and are continuing through Saturday night, Nov. 25. 

    DUI enforcement has been increased for Thanksgiving, as law enforcement is trying to take impaired drivers off the streets. They started Wednesday, Nov. 22, and are continuing through Saturday night, Nov. 25. 

  • Free rides on Sun Link streetcar on Small Business Saturday

    Free rides on Sun Link streetcar on Small Business Saturday

    Friday, November 24 2017 11:52 PM EST2017-11-25 04:52:44 GMT
    (Source: Tucson News Now)(Source: Tucson News Now)

    Free rides on the streetcar for shoppers on Saturday along the Sun Link route. 

    Free rides on the streetcar for shoppers on Saturday along the Sun Link route. 

Powered by Frankly