Detectives uncovered physical and testimonial evidence that led to murder charges against Justin Harris. Harris also worked as a police dispatcher for three years. He failed to learn to cover his own tracks.
"I understand that tragic accidents similar to this one do occur and in most cases the parent simply made a mistake that cost them the life of their child. This investigation, although similar in nature to others, must be weighed on its own merit and the facts that led our detectives to charge the father must be presented at the appropriate time during the judicial process. The chain of events that occurred in this case does not point toward simple negligence and evidence will be presented to support this allegation. In fairness to everyone involved in this emotional case, I would ask that you not make conclusions based on rumor or suspicions and let our judicial system work as it is designed."
The backdrop of the statement is the petition to free Harris, as well as the donations to his family.
"Let us do our job, "Let us get the information out there. Don't be so quick to judge."
Officials, however, didn't release any additional details at the news conference.
We learned that Harris went to his car at lunch on the day that his son died and that computer searches showed seeking information on animals dying in hot cars.
At 4:16 p.m., Harris pulled over at a shopping center on Akers Mill Road, got out and started screaming for help. Witnesses reported hearing Harris yelling, "What have I done? What have I done? I've killed our child." Cobb police Sgt. Dana Pierce told the AJC, "Apparently he forgot the child was in the car-seat."
Pierce later said. "Much has changed about the circumstances leading up to the death of this 22-month-old since it was first reported," Cobb County Police Sgt. Dana Pierce told CNN. "I've been in law enforcement for 34 years. What I know about this case shocks my conscience as a police officer, a father and a grandfather."
"The Cobb County Medical Examiner's Office is waiting for toxicology test results before making an official ruling as to the cause and manner of death," police said in a written statement. "However, the Cobb County Medical Examiner believes the cause of death is consistent with hyperthermia and the investigative information suggests the manner of death is homicide."
A local attorney has criticized police handling of the case thus far, but we must consider that they have been aware of the public's reaction:
"Mr. Harris has the right to have a fair and impartial trial. It's really impacting the ability to presume him innocent. They are keeping him from having that by continuing to put things out."
. "They (police) need to keep their mouths shut because the defense side can't talk and that's the problem, it becomes a dog pile,'' Frye said. "We still don't know what's there. We just know what the police are saying is there."