A 5-year-old child has died after being left in a van for more than eight hours in West Memphis, AR.
The boy, identified as Christopher Gardner Jr, had been picked up to to go a medical clinic, Ascent Children’s Health Services, around 7:30 a.m. Monday.
Two adults were in the van with him. Someone even signed him in at the clinic around 7:15 a.m.
However, the child never got off the bus and no one checked on him until 3:30 PM in the afternoon.
Temperatures reached 80 degrees in Memphis that day. Investigators say temperatures got up to 140 degrees inside the van.
At 70 degrees, a locked car can reach 100 degrees in just 20 minutes. So far, it is not clear why the child did not, or could not, get off the bus.
The West Memphis facility is described by the company’s website as a place that “provides quality outpatient and day treatment services to children and their families that are in need of mental health or developmental care.”
Employees at the facility did not want to talk. Some of them even drove away from the facility with coats over their head.