Dad charged with murder after toddler's death in hot SUV researched the topic online, affidavits say

A Georgia man who is facing a controversial felony murder and child-cruelty case in the death of his toddler son researched the topic online beforehand, police said in a search warrant affidavits.

The warrants say Justin “Ross” Harris, 33, told police after his 22-month-old son’s death earlier this month that “he recently researched, through the internet, child deaths inside vehicles and what temperature it needs to be for that to occur.” They say the father explained he had done so because “he was fearful that this could happen,” reports the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

It isn’t clear from the affidavits when the claimed Internet searches occurred, the newspaper notes.

After having breakfast together at a fast-food restaurant on June 18, the father put the son in a rear-facing child seat in his SUV and drove to work in suburban Atlanta. He says he forgot to take Cooper Mills Harris to daycare and only realized his mistake when he discovered his dead child at the end of his work day, some seven hours later.

Cobb County police say there is to more the story than that, but have provided scant details about the case against the father.

Although an autopsy has not yet been completed, it appears the boy died due to elevated body temperature, reports CNN. The temperature in late afternoon that day was 88 degrees.

Hat tip: CBS News

See also:

Atlanta Journal-Constitution: “Warrants: Cobb toddler’s mom also researched kids dying in hot cars”

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