Hot car death: Child left in vehicle for more than 10 hours

Hot car death: Child left in vehicle for more than 10 hours

Fifteen-month-old Sofia Aveiro is dead after being left in her mother’s vehicle parked in the Procter & Gamble parking lot in Mason on Wednesday.

  • The Warren County Coroner’s Office said the girl’s death is likely heat-related.
  • Aveiro was inside vehicle from about 7:30 a.m. Wednesday until just before 5 p.m.
  • Aveiro’s mother, Karen Osorio-Martinez, is a P&G senior research and development scientist.

Karen Osorio-Martinez

The global consumer products company based in Cincinnati confirmed Osorio-Martinez joined P&G in 2010.

Osorio-Martinez, a University of Puerto Rico and Cornell University graduate, is recognized as an expert in beauty and grooming technology, cell, molecular and developmental biology. She shares a patent for developing a method of collecting and quantifying melanin in skin, using adhesive, according to online records.

Osorio-Martinez called 911 to say that her 15-month-old daughterwas dead in the back seat of her car, where she had been left for nearly nine hours.

The family’s response

A statement by the family of Sofia Aveiro has been released by Procter & Gamble Co.:

“Words cannot express the depth of despair we feel at the loss of our baby girl Sofia. Everyone who had the privilege of knowing Sofia would say that she was truly a blessed child who brought smiles, joy and happiness to everyone. We are grateful for the support of family and friends. We ask for prayers, patience and privacy during this unimaginably difficult time.”

911 call

A woman repeatedly told a 911 dispatcher, “My baby just died” after she left her 15-month-old daughter in a car in the parking lot at her work Wednesday in Mason.

Hospital experts warn of dangers, offer tips to prevent hot car deaths

The mother, who was not initially identified by investigators in Warren County, called 911 just before 5 p.m. from the employee lot at Procter & Gamble Mason Business Center, 8700 Mason Montgomery Road. 

“I left her in the car. She’s dead,” the woman said as a 911 operator tried to get her to initiate CPR on the baby.

Warren County Coroner Dr. Russell Uptegrove said the autopsy results are consistent with a heat-related death, according to preliminary results.  

A final ruling will be made after further test results, including toxicology.

Procter & Gamble Mason Business Center, 8700 Mason Montgomery Road. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

The Warren County coroner’s and prosecutor’s offices and Mason police are investigating. Mason police referred questions to the prosecutor’s office. 

“Mason Police Department reached out to us immediately after receiving the call yesterday,” County Prosecutor David Fornshell said in a text message. “We will not be making any further comment until they have completed their investigation and presented their finding.”

Coroner’s Investigator Doyle Burke said Wednesday night:  "On appearances, certainly the child left in the car, even though it wasn't sweltering hot today, it's obviously going to be hotter in the car. Certainly, a 15-month-old is more susceptible to something like this than an adult. So, that's the theory we're working under." 

According to the National Weather Service in Wilmington, the temperature in the Warren County region was near 80 degrees. 

Warren County officials give press update, Aug. 23, 2017, after a child found dead in a car at Procter & Gamble Mason Business Center, 8700 Mason Montgomery Road. MICHAEL BURIANEK/STAFF

Burke said he could not recall working a case in Warren County involving the death of a child in a hot car. 

"It's preventable," he said. "It's just tragic." 

Burke said of the 15-month-old, “She was left unattended in the car by an employee who worked there." 

"It appears to be all day," Burke said, when asked how long the child may have been left in the car. "... roughly 7:30, 8 a.m. until the dispatch at 5 p.m. The mother of the little girl called 911 upon the discovery." 

The woman said in her 911 call: “My baby just died. My baby just died.” 

“She’s dead. She’s dead,” she continued as the 911 operator continued to urge to try to revive the little girl. 

“How did this happen?” someone else in the parking lot said between sobs as the 911 operator was trying to get the woman to begin CPR. 

This organization obtained the recording this morning from the Warren County Emergency Communications Center through Ohio’s public records laws. 

Burke said it was too early in the investigation to reach any determination about why the child was left in the car. 

Mason police interviewed the parents Wednesday night. 

A child was found dead inside a car Aug. 23, 2017 at Procter & Gamble Mason Business Center, 8700 Mason Montgomery Road. MICHAEL BURIANEK/STAFF

Mason police, Burke said, will investigate what happened and determine what area surveillance cameras might show and whether P&G security officers make routine checks of vehicles. 

P&G released the following statement: 

“We are aware of a tragic accident that took place on the campus of P&G’s Mason Business Center earlier today. Our thoughts and prayers are with the affected family. We are providing our full support to both the family and local officials.” 

Damon Jones, director, global company communications for P&G, said, “We are not releasing any additional details about the individuals involved for privacy reasons.”

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