California

2-year-old dies in hot car in Sacramento

SACRAMENTO (KRON/CNN) - A Sacramento family is mourning the death of a toddler who became trapped in a hot car on Saturday.

Neighbors are also mourning the 2-year-old’s death, wishing they could have saved his life. 

“And the next thing I know is I see the ambulance coming and fire truck, and they're running,” neighbor Joe Richards said.

He knew something was wrong just a few houses down on his street, Everbloom Way.

"And as I got up and walked to the sidewalk, I seen, I guess she was the mother, she was laying out in the middle of the street hollering 'oh!' Just hollering and crying. Police trying to grab her and calm her down and she was just running around in circles,” Richards said.

The Sacramento County sheriff’s Department says the toddler was found inside the family’s car across the street from where they live. He was found passed out with all the windows up.

"Other folks that were there performed life saving measures, CPR and other stuff to try to cool the child and bring him back. But unfortunately those efforts were unsuccessful,” Sgt. Hampton said.

Detectives say it is still unclear how the child got into the car.

Another neighbor says multiple children live in the home with the single mother.

Richards and others on the street say the two-year-old boy was seen often outside of the house on his own.  

"I be seeing it during the day, you know running out. You know coming out the street and running down the street and next thing I know I get to looking and ‘damn where the parents.’ And next thing I know I see someone running out and grab the baby,” Richards said.

Police say the tragedy should serve as a warning to all parents.

According to the nonprofit Kids and Cars,  on average, 37 kids die every year after being trapped in a hot car.

88% of children who have died from vehicular heat stroke are age 3 or younger.

"If we find a dog, or any other animal or child in a vehicle unattended and it's hot and they look like they're in distress... We will break the window. And we encourage anyone that finds themselves in that situation to use their good judgment and move forward and take action if necessary,” Sgt. Hampton said.  

"These type of things unfortunately we see them every summer," he said.

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