Child Protective Services joins investigation into death of 4-year-old in car

Published on Thursday, 12 June 2014 10:42 - Written by

BY KENNETH DEAN, kdean@tylerpaper.com

Child Protective Services has entered the investigation into the death of a 4-year-old who somehow became locked in a parked car with her 3-year-old sister, alongside the Smith County Sheriff's Office.

Shari Pulliam, CPS spokeswoman for the eastern region of Texas, said the death may be heat-related, as the two small children were in the vehicle on a warm day.

Ms. Pulliam said the children's family has no previous history with her agency, and the incident might be a tragic accident.

"Small children, when not properly supervised can get into a lot of places and one of those places is in a vehicle. With the hot temperatures we have in Texas, that can be a potentially deadly place for them to be," she said.

Smith County Sheriff's deputies responded to a residence in the 18000 block of County Road 1100 in the Flint area about 3 p.m. Wednesday on a call of two unresponsive children, according to a sheriff's press release.

Ms. Pulliam said the investigation is in its early stages and a lot of different things will be looked at in the case.

She said the 3-year-old remains hospitalized at this time. 

"Cars are not babysitters, and children should never be left alone in a vehicle. This could be a case where the children got into the vehicle themselves and then couldn't get out," she said.