Autopsy: Boy's Death in Hot Car Looks Like Homicide
But police aren't revealing more specifics
By John Johnson, Newser Staff
Posted Jun 25, 2014 8:12 PM CDT
Justin Ross Harris, in a photo released by the Cobb County (Ga.) Sheriff's Department.   (Ga.) Sheriff's Department)

(Newser) – The autopsy on the Atlanta toddler who died after being left in a hot car is out, and while it doesn't seem to shed much light on what happened, police are sticking by their decision to charge dad Justin Ross Harris with murder. "The Cobb County Medical Examiner believes the cause of death is consistent with hyperthermia and the investigative information suggests the manner of death is homicide," says a police statement. It adds that the ME's office is still awaiting toxicology results to determine the "cause and manner of death." An example of the mixed messages in coverage: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that County Police Chief John Hauser says it wasn't a case of simple negligence, while CNN quotes a police spokesperson saying, "I honestly don't have an answer for that question" when asked whether authorities think it's malice or negligence.

The hyperthermia finding isn't surprising because it means the boy's body temperature rose above 98.6 degrees and stayed there, and by all accounts the boy was left in the car for seven hours on a day that hit 90 degrees. In an earlier development today, police revealed that Harris had driven to his job at Home Depot with Cooper in the back seat after stopping for breakfast at a restaurant about a half-mile away. Harris also returned to the vehicle at lunch time and opened the driver's side door. MyFox Atlanta, meanwhile, is out with a report from an anonymous police source that says investigators seized Harris' work computer and found that someone had looked up how long it takes for an animal to die in a hot car. The report hasn't been confirmed. As for the boy's mother, police have interviewed her and told her not to speak to reporters.

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Showing 3 of 69 comments
James Sunderland
Jul 1, 2014 6:17 PM CDT
What a scumbag!
Doris Nichols Mims
Jul 1, 2014 7:41 AM CDT
The fact that they used the day care center where he worked and he carried the child to day care when he went to work, tells me that he knew the baby was in the car. How can you forget a child in 2/10ths of a mile. He was seen strapping the baby into his car seat before leaving the restaurant, then he forgot! No, I don't think so and I still can not, for the life of me, see how any parent can forget a child in the car. I'm sorry, I just can't comprehend that statement.
Riss Watt
Jun 30, 2014 11:20 PM CDT
I wasn't jumping to conclusions at first just b/c of what he looked up b/c I look up all sorts of things when I hear things on the news or have a discussion with someone etc..but the fact he went back to the car at lunch and still didn't remember his baby was in there seems like he is very guilty..how sad:-( how ca\ anyone allow their child to suffer?