Toddler found dead in car in north Harris County

HOUSTON Harris County sheriff's deputies were dispatched to the 11000 block of Hartley Road for a report of a missing child around 6:30pm. The boy's mother left him with a 78-year-old babysitter while she went to work.

Harris County crime scene investigators surrounded the car where the little boy's lifeless body was found. The boy's grandfather, Reed Warren, was just trying to keep it together.

"It's not a joyful occasion that's for sure," said Warren.

His daughter called him and his wife to the home on Hartley just before 7pm. She had just gotten home herself from work he says when the 78-year-old babysitter told her the boy had been missing for six hours.

"I don't know if she had been looking for him or what, but she never bothered to call anyone to tell them he was missing," Warren said. "My daughter called police when she got home at 7pm."

Deputies arrived and found the boy in the back seat of a disabled vehicle in the front yard. All the windows and doors were locked. They had to break a window to get in, but it was too late. EMS arrived and the child was pronounced dead on the scene.

Reed Warren isn't ready to point fingers yet.

"Right now, I have mixed emotions. I'm not sure how I feel," said Warren.

Police believe the boy was wandering around when he accidentally locked himself inside the car. His exact cause of death has not been released.

Neighbors told us that the babysitter is the mother of the man who the child's mother lives with, and that she usually cares for more children.

Detectives say the 78-year-old woman is mentally capable, but may not be physically capable to care for a toddler. They say the case will be referred to a Harris County grand jury to decide if the babysitter will face criminal charges.

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