Saturday, August 2, 2014

Man Charged in Leaving Baby in Car

From NBC news online:
The lawyer for a Kansas foster dad who left a 10-month-old in a hot car says the first-degree murder charge against his client is too harsh — and the baby's grandmother said "it blows my mind."
Seth Jackson, 29, was held on $250,000 bail after a hearing where prosecutors unveiled the charges but provided no new details about the case.

Mom of Foster Dad of Kid Dead in Hot Car: He 'Wants to Die'

Jackson's defense lawyer, John Stang told NBC News that the child's death was purely accidental and the circumstances don't support a first-degree murder charge, which carries a life sentence with a minimum of 20 years behind bars.
"Overcharged, in my opinion," Stang said. "Rather high for a mistake. I'm not trying to say it's not a horrible loss. The death of a child is an awful thing. But this person is looking at 15 more years than someone who was driving drunk and ran into a car and killed someone."
To say that he was "overcharged" is immediately weakened by qualifying it only as his opinion.  This uncovers his thinking:  "rather" high, he adds. 
We always note what is in the negative, and his sensitivity continues with what he is "not" trying to say. 
Note that "but" refutes or minimizes by comparison that which preceded it. 
He said Jackson's situation is far different than the case of Ross Harris, who is charged with murder in Georgia for leaving his 22-month-old son in a hot car all day — allegedly because he wanted to live a "child-free life."
Does the attorney believe this was not intentional?
"What I have seen thus far, this was not intentional," Stang said, adding that he has seen no evidence that Jackson and his partner neglected or abused their two adopted children and four foster children.
Note that he allows for him to think otherwise when he "sees" more. 
"He is grieving for the child," the lawyer added. "He feels awful. He knows he made a mistake and he accepts responsibility for the mistake. He knows because of his actions, Kadillak is dead."
Note "the" child and not "his foster" or "his child..."  The reader may also wish to consider if the foster father has not understood as he first says "he accepts responsibility" but then adds the explanation as to why he accepts responsibility due to the child's death.  There may have been a debate between lawyer and client about taking ownership.  Judges and juries do not like when one refuses responsibility.  
Police said last week that Jackson picked up his foster daughter — called Anna by his family and Kadillak by her biological relatives — from daycare and then left her strapped in her car seat while he went into his Wichita home with his 5-year-old son.
He "somehow forgot" she was still in the car for two hours — on a 90-degree day — until he saw something on TV that jogged his memory, police said.
"The death of a child is an awful thing. But this person is looking at 15 more years than someone who was driving drunk and ran into a car and killed someone."
The child's maternal grandmother, Cindy Poe, told NBC News that she has many questions about Jackson's actions that day but was surprised by the murder charge.
"It blows my mind," she said. "He loved those kids and they loved him so much. I'm mad, but at the same time, accidents do happen. I'm sure he is beat down inside. It's hard to say what the charge should be."
Jackson was initially held on suspicion of child endangerment. After police handed over the investigation to prosecutors, it was upped to murder.
Dan Dillon, a spokesman for the Sedgwick County district attorney, said only that after reviewing the case "we determined these were appropriate charges based on the evidence."
Kansas law calls for a first-degree murder charge when someone is killed intentionally and with premeditation or "in the commission of...any inherently dangerous felony." In Jackson's case, that could be child endangerment.
Kadillak's death has also triggered a state investigation because she was a foster child.
“We remain deeply saddened that this child suffered such a horrific death," Kansas Department for Children and Families Secretary Phyllis Gilmore said Wednesday.
"We support the charges filed in this case, and we will aid in any way possible the prosecution of the defendant.”


Tania Cadogan said...


A Kansas foster father was high on marijuana when he left a 10-month-old girl in a hot car, where she died, prosecutors said Friday.

Details of the case surfaced during a bond hearing for Seth M. Jackson, 29, of Wichita, who is charged with first-degree murder in the baby's July 24 death.

KWCH reported that Sedgwick County District Attorney Marc Bennett cited the marijuana use in court as the reason for raising his bond to $250,000.

Bennett told the court Jackson had gone to his drug dealer's house and bought marijuana.

He said prosecutors believe Jackson came home to consume marijuana, leaving the girl behind in the car.

Jackson was initially jailed on a $100,000 bond, and the defense had been trying to get the bond lowered.

Police have said Jackson had apparently forgotten about her until something on TV jogged his memory.

The girl was left in a the sweltering car with the windows up for more than two hours outside her foster parents' home in Wichita.

Temperatures at the time were around 90 degrees.

Jackson's defense attorney, John Stang, said earlier this week that prosecutors have gone too far in charging his client with murder and that an involuntary manslaughter charge would have better fit the case.

But Bennett has said the charge was warranted because the child died during the commission of an inherently dangerous felony — aggravated endangering of a child. No one alleges the child was intentionally left in the car.

Both sides agree the circumstances are entirely different than a widely publicized case in Georgia, where a father is charged with murder and child cruelty charges on suspicion of intentionally leaving a 22-month-old boy in a hot car last month as he went to work.

Jackson, 29, was arrested after he found the baby - known as Anna to the new family and Kadillak to her biological relatives - inside his silver Dodge Charger and called emergency services.

Baby Kadillak was being cared for by Jackson and his partner Payton Schroeder, 26, who are parents to two adopted boys, aged five and seven. They had cared for the girl for most of her life
Jackson had collected her from daycare last Thursday but left her in the car with the windows rolled up as he went inside his home with his five-year-old son - as temperatures reached 95 degrees.

When he ran outside to get the girl, he found her unresponsive. Emergency dispatchers got a call at 6.41pm, and the girl was pronounced dead a few minutes later.

One of the foster parents was 'hysterically crying' outside the house before they were both taken in by police for questioning, witnesses said.

Tania Cadogan said...

Jackson and his partner had been trying to adopt the 10-month-old girl they had cared for nearly all her life.

They also had three other foster children, ages three, five and 18; and had two adopted children, ages five and seven. The two younger foster children were visiting other relatives at the time.

Police have said both foster parents were distraught over what happened

Jackson's mother Dottie told NBC that she spoke to her son at 2am Friday.

'He wants to die,' she said. 'Seth's children - that's his life.'

The little girl's biological grandmother Cindy Poe, drove to Wichita to try and discover how the tragedy had occurred.

'Accidents do happen. We don't know if it was accident,' she told NBC station KSN. 'They have a lot of kids they take care of. I want answers.'

The couple's adoptive children were taken into protective custody.

A neighbor said the men were devoted parents.

'They are two of the most kind-hearted guys that I have ever met. And I hate that there's so much controversy right now with babies being left in the car, because I truly don't feel from the bottom of my heart they would ever do this on purpose,' Lindey TenEyck, who lives across the street, told NBC

Both the prosecution and the defense agree the circumstances are entirely different than a widely publicized case in Georgia, where a father is charged with murder and child cruelty charges on suspicion of intentionally leaving the 22-month-old boy in a hot car last month as he went to work.

Bennett said this Kansas case is not charged as an intentional murder.

'No one is alleging, it is not charged that he did this intentionally,' Bennett said of the Kansas case.

'We are not intimating, as authorities in Georgia have, there was some plot or anything like that. It is a different charging theory and a different charging authority in Kansas than what appears to be in Georgia.'

Jackson' partner, Schroeder, has not been charged. He was already home when Jackson came in and assumed he'd brought the baby in, according to police reports

Read more:

Tania Cadogan said...

If it is the case the father was high on marijuana it would explain the charge of murder.

As far as i know his attorney has made no mention of him being high or any drug use, ( lying by ommission)

it won;t get his client public sympathy if it turns out his client was so spaced out he forgot about his child or was presumably in such a rush to get his rush he ignored (forgot) his child in the car.

I would be interested to know what he saw on tv that jolted his memory giving he was allegedly stoned.

I also wonder if the other father will be asked to take a drugs test to see if he too was a user of marijuana or perhaps other drugs.

it is possible if both parents test positive then the children will be taken into care for their own safety.
it also makes me think he may have been a user as well since there is no way he would not have known his partner was on the wacky baccy given its distinctive smell.
I wonder if bongs were found when they removed evidence?

We saw in an earlier case where a dad ended up with a dead daughter and a near dead daughter and his claims they locked themselves in the car whilst he was sitting in his bedroom having some 'me time'(is that the new euphenisum for smoking interesting substances?)

Children and drugs do not mix, the same as children and booze.
There will be consequences and invariably is ends up with a dead or maimed child.

I await with interest if his attorney has any explanation if it turns out the dad was high on dope, how he will minimise it.

Will he identify the dealer as part of a deal?

Anonymous said...

Too bad that stoners have more empathy than most. Foster homes, it seems, aren't carefully chosen but instead accepted as others are looking for long term adoption if they are childless are wanting more than they currently have.

Easy to see from where the charges stem. However, involuntary manslaughter would have been more appropriate. When they overcharge, they have difficulty winning the case which sends a message that it's okay to do what this person did.

Don't they test for drug use prior to and during foster parenthood?

Anonymous said...

This proves to all the people that say, "marijuana isn't dangerous" that it is! Anytime you are taking a mind altering drug or medication, it can be dangerous.

This poor child.

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Red Ryder said...

Drugs and kids don't mix:( Could part of the the felony charge be that he took the kids with him to purchase the drugs? Regardless, another child lost to "me time", adding Baby Lisa Irwin to the list.

Tania Cadogan said...

Red Ryder said...

Drugs and kids don't mix:( Could part of the the felony charge be that he took the kids with him to purchase the drugs? Regardless, another child lost to "me time", adding Baby Lisa Irwin to the list.

Not forgetting the gruesome twome (mccanns's) and tapas 7 who, it seemed, set a precedent (if you believe the neglect claims in which they admit to neglect as in leaving their 3 toddlers home alone in an unlocked apartment along with their chums, resulting in the alleged abduction.

however if you look closely at their words, the children were not left home alone as claimed, they were in fact babysat by the missing adult from the tapas bar each night along with all the other children.

if they children were babysat then there was no neglect.

No neglect = no abduction

No abduction = one dead child and an awful lot of awkward questions as to what happened to Maddie that they had to conceal her body rather than call 911 even though there were multiple doctors in the group.

Admit to neglect and hope for a deal knowing they couldn't then be charged with homicide, concealment of a coprse and filing a false police report with the attendant long sentences ( neglect resulting in harm is a max 10 yrs though they would have to prove the neglect caused the harm)

Knowing this , it was a risk they were prepared to take since the Portugues Police (PJ) would have to prove neglect and all the gruesomes had to then say was, there was no neglect , the children were babysat each night, we panicked etc and game over and they walk away free as they couldn't be charged with the more serious crimes.

This is why the PJ archived the case as they couldn't prove what, if any crime had been committed , and you cannot charge someone for doing sumfin' but we dunno what 'guv.

Anonymous said...

Looks like the terror cyberstalkers are the ones attacking the blog. Donate to my or else.

Noticed they picked up their chump change yesterday. They used to set up boxes at glass business...before they started busting out windsheilds.

Anonymous said...

What the hell is a foster parent doing changing a kid's name? This does not sound like a healthy situation even before the accident?

Doty said...

From what I've read about this case, I can't see it being in the best interests of the (adopted) children to be removed from the innocent parent and their home. I can't imagine if my husband committed a crime and I lose my children because of it. Children are harmed by removal from their home and parents. It should never be "Yank 'em and will figure it out later".

Doty said...

Anon at 5:21pm---yes yes yes. You got it!! I thought the same thing.
When a parent has their child removed by CPS they always have to pass weekly drug tests, even when drugs were nit alleged to begin with. Yet potential foster parents are NEVER tested as a condition of fostering. Outrageous.

Anonymous said...

'Kadillak?' Really now? YOu wouldn't change the name? What if it had been "Intrepid," "Bonneville" or even "Camero?"

That's probably where the baby was conceived or born or what the mother hoped to get from the birth.

Anonymous said...

A child crying on the television show "Game of Thrones" jogged a foster parent's memory that he had left a 10-month-old girl inside a sweltering car while he and his partner smoked marijuana at their house

Anonymous said...

during the commission of an inherently dangerous felony — aggravated endangering of a child

He "somehow forgot"

consume marijuana, leaving the girl behind in the car

so is it that because he was smoking pot what makes it aggravated?
but if he had been having sex with his partner and the kid just slipped his mind it would have been an accident and not aggravated? does it really matter why he forgot the kid? or is it that only stupid people are let off the hook?

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