Baby dies after being left in hot car by foster mother at Pineville shopping center

Baby dies after being left in hot car by foster mother at Pineville shopping center
According to the Pineville Police Department, officers responded to a 911 call regarding an unresponsive 12-month-old inside a car at the Lowe’s parking lot on McMullen Creek Parkway. (Source: Reuben Muiruri | WBTV)

PINEVILLE, N.C. (WBTV) - Police say a 1-year-old baby died after being left in a hot car in a Pineville shopping center Thursday afternoon.

According to the Pineville Police Department, officers responded to a 911 call regarding an unresponsive 12-month-old inside a car at the Lowe’s parking lot on McMullen Creek Parkway.

Police say life-saving measures were taken and the child was taken to the hospital by Medic. The child was pronounced dead at the hospital.

Officers say an investigation has discovered that the baby was left inside the car for a prolonged period of time by the foster mother. Police said the foster mother was at work in the nearby shopping center prior to calling 911 about the unresponsive child.

Investigators said on Friday that the baby’s biological mother was not involved in the case.

The foster mother has been cooperative with police and is being interviewed at the police department, according to officers.

“We have a lengthy investigation ahead of us and we will be working through tonight and during the coming days,” a press release from Pineville Police read.

Police say no criminal charges have been filed, but representatives from the Mecklenburg County District Attorney’s Office and Department of Social Services are being called in to investigate the situation.

Just hours after police released information about what had happened, a national advocacy group started sharing the story.

A representative from KidsAndCars.org spoke to WBTV Thursday night. Janette Fennell, the president and founder of the group, thinks hot car deaths are preventable. She’s advocating for federal legislation that she believes could prevent these terrible incidents from happening.

“The bill is called the Hot Cars Act of 2019 and what it does is it just requires automakers to add a little technology to vehicles so they can detect the presence of a child,” said Fennell.

She said the technology would allow for an automobile to sound an alarm or send a mobile alert to the driver if a child had been accidentally left in the car. Fennell hopes the Hot Cars Act will be reintroduced to lawmakers sometime soon.

No further information regarding the case was released.

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