10-Month-Old Baby Dies After Being Left in Hot Vehicle by Babysitter

Jacksonville, Fla. A heartbreaking incident occurred in Macclenny, where a 10-month-old girl lost her life after being left inside a hot vehicle for five hours by her babysitter. The Baker County Sheriff’s Office reported the devastating news on Wednesday.

According to the arrest report, the babysitter, identified as Rhonda Jewell, 46, had gone to the child’s mother’s home around 8 a.m. to pick up the baby, whom she had occasionally babysat since June.

After picking up the child, Jewell proceeded to a residence on Estate Street in Macclenny, where she was to take care of other children. Tragically, upon arrival, Jewell mistakenly assumed that the 10-month-old was asleep in her car seat in the SUV. She became preoccupied with tending to the other children and completely forgot about the infant left in the car in the garage.

The tweet below verifies the news:

Five hours later, at approximately 1 p.m., when the girl’s mother returned to collect her daughter, the devastating discovery was made – the 10-month-old was still strapped in her car seat inside the scorching hot SUV.

Emergency responders rushed the baby to Fraser Memorial Hospital, but despite their efforts, the little girl could not be saved.

Rhonda Jewell was subsequently arrested on a charge of aggravated manslaughter of a child. During a court appearance on Thursday morning, her bond was set at $25,000, and she will be subject to GPS monitoring upon release.

The incident adds to the tragic toll of hot car deaths across the United States. Kids and Car Safety, an organization advocating for the prevention of such accidents, has reported that this marks the 14th time this year that a child has died after being left in a hot vehicle in the country. In Florida alone, it is the sixth hot car fatality in 2023.

Last year, the nation witnessed a total of 33 hot car deaths, with four of them occurring in Florida.

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