Virginia dad kills self after toddler son found dead in car, police say

cigaretteman

HR King
May 29, 2001
71,405
50,966
113
Police are investigating the death of an 18-month-old boy who died Tuesday after being left unattended in a vehicle for several hours. The boy’s father later committed suicide, Chesterfield County police said.
“It’s just a tragedy on so many levels,” said police Lt. Col. Christopher Hensley. “Our hearts go out to the family and friends that are going to deal with this.”
Officers began their investigation at 11:42 a.m. after receiving reports of a child being left in a family vehicle.




Hensley said police were in contact with the child’s mother and relatives who said the boy may be in danger after they learned he had not been dropped off at day care. The family indicated to police that the boy’s father was making suicidal statements, police said.

Police were told the vehicle may be located at the father’s home in the 14100 block of Aldengate Road.

“Other people contacted us [and said] we needed to respond to that address, to check on his welfare, and that’s when things unfolded,” said Hensley



Officers discovered the vehicle, but nothing was inside except an empty car seat, Hensley said.


Police then entered the home, where they found the 18-month-old boy dead. The boy’s father was discovered shortly after in the woods behind the house with an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Hensley said police believe the father left the child in the vehicle for several hours before discovering the boy was dead. When he discovered the child, he returned home, took the child inside, exited his home and shot himself, police said.

Authorities have not released the identities of the father and son.
Anyone with information is asked to call police at (804) 748-1251 or Crime Solvers at (804) 748-0660.
And for additional information on suicide prevention, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or text ‘HELLO’ to the Crisis Text Line at 741741.

 

NDallasRuss

HR Legend
Dec 5, 2002
32,508
18,373
113
Man, I can't imagine going through that - agree with Keehawk: I might do the same thing if it were me and that happened.

I had an acquaintance from college that accidentally left his kid in the car and the baby died. The guy didn't off himself, but I would imagine that he still thinks about it every single day and is constantly haunted by it. He isn't/wasn't a bad guy - it's just something that I guess happens to people.
 

fredjr82

HR Legend
Gold Member
Nov 13, 2007
23,055
13,084
113
What a horrible story. I think I would do the same thing if I did that. How excruciating for the baby and the father and the rest of the family as well.

I always wonder what I would do if I lost one of my kids. I know if I lost all 3 of them, I'd probably drink myself to death.
 

Keehawk

HR Heisman
May 24, 2011
5,311
4,993
113
I don't understand why people leave their kids in a car.
I always thought that too. Then one day I went to the store and got almost all the way in the door and suddenly remembered my son. Scared the shit out of me. Still makes me emotional typing this 15 years later. I always had empathy since that day for people that have this happen.
 

NDallasRuss

HR Legend
Dec 5, 2002
32,508
18,373
113
None of them mean to. They just space out on its being there for some reason, especially if it's not a normal routing for them to have the child along with them.
Yeah, I think it's often a combination of it not being the normal routine, having 1,000 things going on at a time, rushing to get from one task to the next, etc.
 

JupiterHawk

HR Legend
Jan 6, 2005
15,580
22,061
113
Jupiter, FL
Does anybody else find this story difficult to follow? What was the sequence of events?
It is. Sounds like the parents are divorced. Daycare called mom to tell her the baby was not dropped off. Police go to father’s house to find two bodies and assume baby was left in car. But left in car for several hours?
 

fredjr82

HR Legend
Gold Member
Nov 13, 2007
23,055
13,084
113
Does anybody else find this story difficult to follow? What was the sequence of events?

A little bit. It reads like the father was already making suicidal threats somewhere, went home with the child, the child left in car and died, and the father killed himself.
 

artradley

HR Legend
Apr 26, 2013
30,230
53,359
113
It is. Sounds like the parents are divorced. Daycare called mom to tell her the baby was not dropped off. Police go to father’s house to find two bodies and assume baby was left in car. But left in car for several hours?

And where was it parked initially? It says he "returned home", but from where? And the family said he was making suicidal statements - when was that?

Just a scrambled mess of a story.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Theyset.theStage

JupiterHawk

HR Legend
Jan 6, 2005
15,580
22,061
113
Jupiter, FL
And where was it parked initially? It says he "returned home", but from where? And the family said he was making suicidal statements - when was that?

Just a scrambled mess of a story.
My first instinct was possibly a murder suicide. But changed after read other posts.
 

CJBauer

HR Legend
Staff
Dec 21, 2001
11,524
5,441
113
Newtown, PA
Sad story all around...

You would think with today's technology someone would have developed a sensor/alarm that would tie into the car seat and key fob...like if the key fob is outside the car and the pressure plate under the car seat is still down (meaning kid is still in it) the cars alarm system would go off and it would send a message to your cell phone(s) after say 5 minutes?
 

Derekd3408

HR Legend
Gold Member
Feb 10, 2011
16,448
25,320
113
There's a 0% chance I don't off myself if I'm responsible for the death of my son. No way I could spend 30-40 years living with that.
 
  • Like
Reactions: ericram and Keehawk

Derekd3408

HR Legend
Gold Member
Feb 10, 2011
16,448
25,320
113
Sad story all around...

You would think with today's technology someone would have developed a sensor/alarm that would tie into the car seat and key fob...like if the key fob is outside the car and the pressure plate under the car seat is still down (meaning kid is still in it) the cars alarm system would go off and it would send a message to your cell phone(s) after say 5 minutes?
We have a GMC Terrain and it beeps when you turn it off and a message to check the back seat pops up if someone is sitting there.
 
  • Like
Reactions: cigaretteman

FSUTribe76

HR Heisman
Jan 23, 2008
7,809
12,301
113
Most people who leave their kids in a car would piss hot. C’mon. For every decent person who made this mistake there’s 3 twacked out idiots.

Nope not even remotely close. Only 60% of cases reach a level of criminal negligence of all kinds and that would include not just people high, but alcoholics, schizophrenics and other mental illnesses. 40% are simply accidents.

 

FSUTribe76

HR Heisman
Jan 23, 2008
7,809
12,301
113
Nope. Don’t know where you’d find such a statistic. I’m confident the guy in this story was on drugs. Forgot my kid for a couple hours?

It took me one search on Safari to find the actual statistics. Try to learn something before you spout off.
 
  • Like
Reactions: fredjr82

Keehawk

HR Heisman
May 24, 2011
5,311
4,993
113
Sad story all around...

You would think with today's technology someone would have developed a sensor/alarm that would tie into the car seat and key fob...like if the key fob is outside the car and the pressure plate under the car seat is still down (meaning kid is still in it) the cars alarm system would go off and it would send a message to your cell phone(s) after say 5 minutes?
I'm not sure people would bother with it. Nobody thinks they're going to forget their kid until they do.
 

Keehawk

HR Heisman
May 24, 2011
5,311
4,993
113
I've heard advice online saying that you should put your phone in the back seat with your baby so you'll remember. If that isn't sad, I don't know what is.
 

fredjr82

HR Legend
Gold Member
Nov 13, 2007
23,055
13,084
113
I've heard advice online saying that you should put your phone in the back seat with your baby so you'll remember. If that isn't sad, I don't know what is.

I leave my phone in the car too. It's all about routine and distractions, really. Once you have those two enter the equation anyone can forget to do something or be flustered when their routine doesn't go as planned.

Thankfully, all of my kids can successfully unbuckle themselves and get out of the car. I'm more worried about someone getting their fingers shut in the door now.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Keehawk

ericram

HR All-American
Nov 5, 2002
3,471
5,736
113
Tallahassee, FL
Sad story all around...

You would think with today's technology someone would have developed a sensor/alarm that would tie into the car seat and key fob...like if the key fob is outside the car and the pressure plate under the car seat is still down (meaning kid is still in it) the cars alarm system would go off and it would send a message to your cell phone(s) after say 5 minutes?
My lexus tells me to check the back seat if I leave a package of a bit of weight on the seat.