A 31-year-old man named Dustin Lee Dennis has been arrested in Tulsa, Oklahoma after two of his children were found dead inside of his house after allegedly being locked inside his truck for five hours, Fox23 reported this morning.
According to the arrest report, Dennis was arrested on Saturday and is being charged on two counts of second-degree murder. He is currently being held at the Tulsa County Jail, and his bond has been set at $1 million.
A family member has identified his children as Teagan, 4, and Ryan, 3.
Dennis told police officers that he had driven with his kids to a local convenience store at around noon and then driven home shortly after. The accused claimed that he accidentally fell asleep, and when he woke up, he could not find either his son or daughter.
Supposedly, Dennis discovered that they were on the floorboard of his truck, and he thought they were sleeping. From there, the father carried them into his home where they were pronounced dead by paramedics.
The actual cause of death has not yet been released to the public.
However, contrary to Dennis’ statement, a neighbor allegedly recorded video footage of the 31-year-old exiting his truck and going inside his house without his children in tow. The clip reportedly shows him locking his vehicle.
“The children had not been checked on for nearly five hours during the time they were locked inside the vehicle,” said the arrest report.
The article does not indicate who called the police or the paramedics to check on the kids.
It does not take very long for children to start feeling the effects of heatstroke, according to information shared in the article. On Saturday, temperatures in Tulsa reached the low 90s.
A follow-up article from Fox23 reported that the children’s aunt, Chantiel Keyes, had set up a GoFundMe page to help pay for the funeral costs of the two children. According to information shared on the fundraising page, Dennis had the children during his visitation weekend.
“There is no way to express our grief or what my sister is going through. No one is ever expecting to go through this. I am just trying to raise money to help her with funeral expenses, so it’s one thing she does not have to deal with,” wrote Keyes.
Keyes also wrote that the children would be “survived by their mother Cheyenne, sisters Emma and Ava, brothers Brantley, Tyler and Treyton.”
She set the donation goal for $10,000 and asked for people to help in any way if they were able to.