Mum charged after reportedly leaving baby girl in hot car while she was at work
| Last updated
Featured Image Credit: Facebook/Ivy Lynn Lee
A US mum has been charged with second-degree murder after allegedly leaving her six-month-old baby in a hot car while she was at work.
The little girl, identified by family members as Carissa Lewis, had been sitting in the car for five hours while her mother was at work, on a day when temperatures in Louisiana reached 33 degrees Celcius.
Police were first alerted to the incident when mum Ivy Lee, 22, flagged down an off-duty police officer to tell them that her baby was not breathing.
As another officer arrived on the scene, the pair attempted to revive baby Carissa, but she was later pronounced dead at the hospital.
At first, Ivy Lee denied that Carissa had been in her care when she was found unresponsive, but later confessed to leaving her daughter in the car, Law and Crime reports.
Authorities said that Ivy Lee had been at work for 10.30am and didn't return to the car until 3.30pm. The mum allegedly told officers that she thought her baby was sleeping.
According to Ivy's sister, Ashley Lee, this isn't the first time that the mum has left her child unattended in her vehicle.
Speaking to local news station WAFB-TV, Ashley claimed that, in 2019, Ivy had left her other child Averleigh, who was two-months-old at the time, unattended in a vehicle.
"An officer had passed at the time and seen she was in the car and that my sister was smoking in the park", Ashley Lee recalled.
Commenting on the 2019 incident, Chief Deputy Gary Guillory told the station that Louisiana's Department of Children and Family Services had been involved, but "the mother voluntarily gave us that baby before the state had to get involved. That baby was given to a family member, so there was never another follow-up."
Custody of Averleigh was given to Ivy Lee's sister Ashley.
Ashley claims that the Department of Children and Family Services tried to make home visits to Ivy since the 2019 incident, but to no avail.
"They said they were going to get in contact with me, they would let me know something,” she told the station.
“This all just happened so quick, that before they could even call me and let me know anything about Avery, what’s going on with Avery, this happens with a new baby."
On top of her second-degree murder charge, Ivy Lee was also charged with possession of marijuana.
Her bail has been set at $1.2 million (£997,000).