Girl Left in Hot Car for 16 Hours Dies; Dad Arrested

He admits he was drinking, blacked out
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 23, 2015 6:45 PM CDT
This photo provided by Baltimore Police Department shows Wilber Carter.   (Baltimore Police Department via AP)

(Newser) – Tragedy in Baltimore, where a 2-year-old girl died yesterday after being left in a hot car. Police say her father, Wilbert Carter, left her in the car sometime Sunday, and WBAL-TV reports that she was inside it for at least 16 hours. Carter, 31, is also reportedly the one who found her the next day around 5pm and ran to call police, who found little Leasia Carter in the locked car. A witness says she saw Wilbert Carter walking down the street, crying. "A lady comes out of the house or walks out the street and they just start screaming." Another witness says Carter was "sitting there like, 'Somebody's dead, somebody's dead,' and we couldn't make out what he was saying, but we know he was saying somebody was dead." He was later arrested on second-degree murder and child abuse charges.

Carter told police he had five drinks on Sunday, was drinking into the wee hours of Monday, and couldn't remember what happened, but the Washington Post reports that he said a friend drove his car to the location where the girl was later found. "The father went home at some point in time last night," a police official said yesterday. "This afternoon when he woke up, he discovered that his child wasn't there." Adds a police spokesperson today, "When he woke up around 4pm yesterday afternoon, that's when he began searching for his daughter." He reportedly asked his mother and aunt where she was and they said they saw him come home at 7am and assumed the girl was with his sister, but he found her after a cousin called to alert him to where his car was parked. The child was not breathing when she was found, and she suffered second-degree burns in the 90-degree heat.

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