LOS ANGELES (KTLA/WCMH) — Police in California are investigating the death of a 2-year-old girl who was left in a car with the heater on and windows rolled up while her mother was allegedly drinking with a friend nearby.
June Love Augusto died at a hospital on Sept. 23 after she was found unconscious inside her mother’s vehicle, according to a reports issued by the Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner. An autopsy was performed, but her cause of death was yet to be determined pending the results of further forensic tests, KTLA reported.
The girl’s mother originally told officials she left the child alone for a few minutes, but a coroner’s report says she eventually admitted that was not the case.
She told investigators she left the child in the car, alone, about 11:30 p.m. on Sept. 21, then got into another vehicle nearby to drink alcohol with a friend, according to the coroner’s report. The woman said she turned on the car’s heater and placed a blanket on her daughters lap so she wouldn’t get cold, KTLA reported.
The woman fell asleep and woke up around 5 a.m. A report says she checked on the child and found her unresponsive.
“Vomit was present on her shirt and the car seat. Skin was coming off the decedent’s back,” the report said. “(The mother) places her on the grass and sprayed her with the water hose in an attempt to cool her down. The decedent was taken into and a call was placed to 911.”
Paramedics took the girl to a hospital, but she could not be saved, officials said. Paramedics noted apparent burns to the girls face, chest and arms, as well as cloudiness in her eyes, the report stated. “Her temperature upon arrival was 107.5 degrees.”
Investigators learned the mother had a history of drug abuse and lost custody of an older child six years ago due to neglect. The child was taken during a drug bust in which the mother and a man were arrested on suspicion of possessing cocaine for sales , operating a drug factory and risk of injury to a minor in Connecticut, the Norwich Bulletin reported.
As of Sunday, the mother has not been arrested.