6-month-old dies alone in a hot car, Louisiana police say. Mom is charged with murder

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·2 min read

A mother has been charged with second-degree murder after Louisiana detectives say she left her 6-month-old baby in a hot car for about five hours.

Ivy L. Lee, 22, flagged down an off-duty deputy at 3:45 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 14 in Lake Charles because her baby wasn’t breathing, according to a news release from the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office.

After another deputy stopped at the scene and the deputies attempted to resuscitate the infant, the release states, she was sent to a hospital and pronounced dead.

Sunday’s high temperature in Lake Charles was 90 degrees, according to the National Weather Service.

The child’s death was the 16th hot car child death reported this year in the U.S., according to the National Safety Council. Research shows just how dangerous leaving a child in a car can be; the temperature inside a car can go from 72 degrees to 117 degrees in a hour.

In their investigation, police say Lee changed her story after first telling them the child was not in her care. The mother later told them, according to the statement, she left the baby in her car while at work for about five hours.

Detectives said marijuana was also found inside the vehicle, which was not Lee’s first offense.

In a news conference reported by KPLC News, Chief Deputy Gary “Stitch” Guillory said Lee was arrested in 2019 for abandoning a two-month-old in a vehicle. That infant was removed from her care and homed with another family member.

“Somebody out there would have loved this child, somebody would have loved the opportunity to raise this child,” said Guillory.

Lee was charged with second-degree murder and possession of marijuana with bail set at $1,204,000.

Lake Charles is about 127 miles west of Baton Rouge.

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