crimesider

Ga. dad accused of leaving child in car charged with murder

COBB COUNTY, Ga. - A father is charged with murder after allegedly leaving his 22-month-old son in a hot car for eight hours, reports CBS affiliate WGCL.

Justin Ross Harris, 34, was supposed to drop the toddler off at daycare, according to the station. Police said he forgot and instead drove to work around 9 a.m. Wednesday morning. He left the child in the car.

WGCL reports Harris only noticed the boy after leaving work eight hours later and looking in the backseat. Police said Harris saw the child still strapped in his car seat, unresponsive.

Temperatures in Atlanta topped 90 degrees Wednesday afternoon. Temperatures inside a hot car could go as high as 130 to 140 degrees in a few hours, WGCL reports.

Witness Dale Hamilton reported seeing Harris pull into Cobb County's Akers Mill Square shopping center, stop his car straddling two lanes of traffic, jump out of the vehicle and start to perform CPR on the child, according to the station.

"It is tough," Hamilton told WGCL. "I'm not sure how someone could forget they have a child in the backseat.... He was constantly saying, 'What have I done, what have I done.'"

Harris is charged with murder and cruelty to children, both felonies, and the station reports he is currently being held without bond at the Cobb County Adult Detention Center.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call (770) 499-3945.

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