Heather Jensen arrested in deaths of two children left in up to 145 degree heat
|This shot of Heather, left, is from an old MySpace page.|
The sheriff's department subsequently impounded the 4Runner, with an eye toward determining if carbon monoxide from the running engine may have filtered into the passenger compartment. Tests suggested otherwise. However, the affidavit notes that an investigator recorded the passenger-compartment temperature with the heater on for the extended stretch the boys were thought to have been left inside the vehicle, and the results were shocking. Here's an excerpt from the report:
• The first test was with the heat all the way on the hot setting, the fan at medium, and two windows cracked. The temperature at the start of the test was between 48 and 52 degrees. After half an hour, the temperature inside the vehicle jumped to 114-123 degrees. After an hour and a half, the temperature was between 127-145 degrees.Given these results, it's no surprise that the medical examiner ultimately concluded that the boys had died of hyperthermia. He ruled their passing accidental, but added the following caveat in his report:
• The second test was with the windows rolled up, the heat at the highest setting and the fan speed at high. The temperature at the start of the test was 48-50 degrees. After thirty minutes, it jumped to 125-132 degrees. After an hour, it was 130-136 degrees.
Leaving children unattended in motor vehicles has well known risks associated with various forms of fatal and non-fatal injury; in particular, hyperthermia deaths occurring as a result of sun exposure in automobiles in temperate environments is well known. Other risks include, but are not limited to: Carbon Monoxide inhalation, entrapment in power windows, hypothermia, positional asphyxia, and engagement of the drive train leading to collision. Despite the likely unrecognized risk of hyperthermia in this case, the deliberate and reckless act of leaving the decedent and his brother in an unattended running motor vehicle constitutes neglect and is the sole cause directly responsible for the death of this decedent and his sibling. Despite neglect being the direct precipitating factor in the death of the decedent and his sibling, deliberate intent to kill cannot be established with certainty; therefore, the manner of death is classified as accident. The manner of death may be reclassified as homicide if additional information becomes available.Continue for more about Heather Jensen's arrest, plus additional photos and videos.