Hill Country children dead after being left in car for
more than 15 hours
KERR COUNTY, Texas (KXAN) — A 19-year-old Hill Country
mother is in jail accused of causing the death of her
two daughters by leaving them in a hot car for more than
The Kerr County Sheriff’s Office says
on Tuesday, June 7, Amanda Hawkins, along with a
16-year-old male, showed up at Peterson Regional Medical
Center in Kerrville with her two daughters, Brynn
Hawkins, 1, and Addyson Overgard-Eddy, 2. Hospital staff
determined the children were in “grave condition” and
transported them to University Hospital in San Antonio.
At the time, Hawkins told hospital staff she, her
friend and her two daughters had been at a nearby lake
smelling flowers when the children collapsed. An
investigation revealed the two young girls had been left
in their mother’s vehicle overnight on Monday, June 6
until noon the following day. Authorities say while her
children were in the car for more than 15 hours, she was
inside a home with her friends.
discovered the girls, investigators say she tried to
bathe them and did not “immediately want to take the
girls to the hospital because she did not want to get in
Even though hospital staff tried to
save the baby and toddler, they both passed away
“This is by far the most
horrific case of child endangerment that I have seen in
the 37 years that I have been in Law Enforcement,” said
Kerr County Sheriff Rusty Hierholzer in a statement.
Hawkins is currently in the Bexar County Jail in San
Antonio awaiting transfer back to Kerr County. She is
currently charged with two counts of abandoning or
endangering a child but the sheriff says they expect the
charges to be updated since the girls died.
2 toddlers died after mom left
them in hot car in Texas to teach 'lesson,' police say
On the day her two children were found dead, Cynthia
Marie Randolph recounted for investigators a mother's
nightmare: She had been folding laundry and watching
television while her young daughter and son, ages 2 and 16
months, played in an enclosed sun room on the back porch.
Randolph, 24, went to check on her children after about
a half-hour – but they were "gone," she told police. She
said that after a half-hour of searching, she finally
spotted their bodies, unresponsive, inside her 2010 Honda
Crosstour parked in her driveway.
It was May 26, a
day when the high temperature outside Randolph's home in
Weatherford, Texas, reached 96 degrees, according to police
Medics pronounced both children dead at the
scene, authorities said.
According to the Parker
County Sheriff's Office, when asked how long the children
might have been exposed to the high temperatures inside the
car, Randolph responded immediately: "No more than an hour."
Less than a month after the tragedy, Randolph has been
arrested after her original explanation for her children's
deaths unraveled. Through multiple interviews with
investigators over the past month, Randolph "created several
variations of the events" of May 26, police said.
a final interview with investigators Friday, Randolph
described an entirely different timeline for what happened
that day - one that began much earlier in the afternoon than
she had previously admitted.
Cynthia Marie Randolph
This undated booking photo provided by Parker County, Texas,
sheriff's office shows Cynthia Marie Randolph. Randolph told
investigators that she left her 2-year-old daughter and
16-month-old son in a hot car where they died May 26 , 2017,
to teach the girl a lesson, according to sheriff's
officials. (Parker County, Texas, sheriff's office via AP)
At about 12:15 p.m., Randolph said she had found her
children playing inside her car and ordered them to come
out, police said.
"Stop your s-t," Randolph said she
told her 2-year-old daughter, according to police.
"When they refused to exit, Randolph told police she shut
the car door to teach Juliet a lesson, thinking she could
get herself and her brother out of the car when ready," a
probable cause affidavit for the incident stated. "The
defendant went inside the house, smoked marijuana and took a
nap. The defendant said she was asleep for two or three
It was only after her nap that Randolph found
her children unresponsive inside the Honda Crosstour, police
said. Randolph further told investigators that she broke the
car window so that it would look like an accident, police
Randolph was charged Friday with two
first-degree felony counts of injury to a child causing
serious bodily injury. She is being held at the Parker
County Jail on a $200,000 bond, records show. A sheriff's
spokeswoman did not immediately return a call Saturday
afternoon, and jail records do not list an attorney for
Over the past two decades, more than 700
children have died of heatstroke while in hot cars, said Jan
Null, a meteorologist who compiles and keeps track of the
data on noheatstroke.org.
"Every one of these can be
prevented," Null told The Washington Post last year.
Null said more than half of the incidents occurred because a
child had been "forgotten" by a caregiver. About 28 percent
of those deaths were because a child had been playing in an
unattended vehicle. About 17 percent of the deaths resulted
because a child was intentionally left inside a vehicle by
an adult, Null's site states.
The National Safety
Council says that unintentionally leaving a child inside a
car "can happen to anyone."
"Maybe it's an overworked
parent who forgets to drop off their child at day care, or a
relative who thinks the child will be okay 'for just a few
minutes,' " says an NSC pamphlet on the issue.
group advises parents to put something they will need by
their child's car seat - a purse, wallet or phone, for
example - as an additional reminder to check the back.
"Remember, children overheat four times faster than
adults," says a message on the council's website. "A child
is likely to die when his body temperature reaches 107
degrees, and that can happen in minutes."
see a child alone in a car are advised to call 911
immediately or even break into the car during an emergency,
the group said, noting that many states have good Samaritan