Parents charged in toddler’s suspected hot car death in
A 3-year-old boy was found
dead in a hot car in Franklin County on Sunday, and his parents
could now face up to 20 years in prison.
Fowler, 20, and Brandi Michelle Burks, 22, were arrested on
manslaughter charges, according to the Franklin County sheriff’s
office. The parents are held in the Franklin County jail without
bail set, records show.
Their 3-year-old son was found
unresponsive in a car on Church Street in the tiny northwest
Alabama town of Hodges on Sunday around 4 p.m. Resuscitation
efforts were unsuccessful, and the boy was declared dead,
Sheriff Shannon Oliver’s office announced in a press release.
"According to the parents, the child was last seen around
midnight when they put him to bed,” the sheriff said in the
press release. The parents woke up around 3 p.m. and found the
child in a car, according to the sheriff.
In a phone
interview with AL.com, Oliver said he believes the boy’s death
was a tragic accident.
“I don’t feel there was any intent
there,” he said. “I think it was neglect, which sadly cost the
little guy’s life.
“It’s just a sad situation all
around,” the sheriff added. “These types of cases are really
hard for everybody.”
The child’s body has been sent for
autopsy at the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences for
The investigation is continuing, but the sheriff
said he believes the boy died as a result of being left in a hot
It’s unclear whether the parents have attorneys to
speak on their behalf. If convicted of manslaughter, they could
face up to 20 years in prison.
[ Return to