A Kentucky father has been arrested after an incident in which his young child was left in a hot vehicle, but the situation seems to be a mistake rather than an intentional instance of neglect.
The Kentucky father arrested is not the first and probably will not be the last person to make such a mistake even just this year — and as the weather heats up, the number of stories in which kids are left in hot cars to become seriously injured or die of hyperthermia either by accident or poor exercise in judgment always increases along with temperatures.
But the Kentucky father arrested highlights a serious side-issue when it comes to kids left in hot cars — in a case where it appears to be a genuine mistake, should anyone be held to account criminally for the outcome?
The Kentucky father, 31-year-old Kenneth Robinson, was driving his 2-year-old to day care, and in an incident with sad echoes to previous cases that ended more tragically, simply forgot to stop at the child care center before going to his job. A coworker noticed the boy, still breathing, and called an ambulance.
The Kentucky father was arrested and charged with wanton endangerment, and the boy survived. But the phenomenon is well-known, and with a death toll to match. Dozens of children succumbed to hyperthermia last year after being left in a hot car, and six have died this year alone.
A few years back, the Washington Post examined in depth the scary trend, and the stories were as heartbreaking as they were utterly explainable. Our brains often cruise on autopilot, and no parent would just choose to risk near certain and painful death for their child or baby could they prevent it — which makes the motiveless crime a terrible one to punish.
Do you think the Kentucky father should have been arrested for his nearly fatal mistake?