Sponsored by:

Comment, blog & share photos

Log in | Become a member
The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Friday, November 21, 2003

Autopsy confirms baby left in car died from heat

By Eloise Aguiar
Advertiser Staff Writer

A 10-month-old baby left in a hot, locked automobile on Oct. 13 while her mother conducted a class at the YMCA in Kailua died of hyperthermia, higher than normal body temperature, the Medical Examiner's office has determined.

Anuhea Paet was apparently left in the car for about six hours while her mother, Susanna Hunt, went to work in Kane'ohe and later taught a physical therapy class at Windward YMCA.

Hunt said she realized after the class at about 1 p.m. that she had left the baby in the car.

Police have said the autopsy results were needed before they can decide whether to file criminal charges against Hunt.

But police said yesterday that they have not taken an official statement from Hunt and that the case is still under investigation.

State health officials say young children can suffer heat stroke within minutes in such situations, when the body temperature reaches 105 degrees Fahrenheit, or death at 107 degrees.

Even with a window cracked open by 1 1/2 inches, the temperature inside a car can rise from the low 90s to above 125 degrees within half an hour, according to a San Francisco State study.