Warrant: Father searched Internet for child car death
by Hilary Butschek
June 29, 2014 04:00 AM | 7239 views | 16 16 comments | 34 34 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Flowers cover the grave of Cooper Harris at the Tuscaloosa Memorial Park Cemetery on Saturday in Tuscaloosa, Ala.<br>The Associated Press
Flowers cover the grave of Cooper Harris at the Tuscaloosa Memorial Park Cemetery on Saturday in Tuscaloosa, Ala.
The Associated Press
slideshow
A Tuscaloosa police officer stands by the hearse as it leaves the University Church of Christ after a service for Cooper Harris on Saturday in Tuscaloosa, Ala.<br>The Associated Press
A Tuscaloosa police officer stands by the hearse as it leaves the University Church of Christ after a service for Cooper Harris on Saturday in Tuscaloosa, Ala.
The Associated Press
slideshow
MARIETTA — The same day warrants were released saying a Marietta man admitted to searching the Internet for details on child deaths in cars, he called to his son’s funeral from jail.

Justin Ross Harris was charged with felony murder and cruelty to children after Cobb County police say he left his 22-month-old son in his car for about seven hours June 18, when temperatures reached the 90s.

“During an interview with Justin, he stated that he recently researched, through the Internet, child deaths inside vehicles and what temperature it needs to be for that to occur,” the warrant stated.

At his son’s funeral Saturday afternoon in Alabama at Tuscaloosa Memorial Chapel, Harris called in to listen to the service. He also spoke to the crowd of about 300 on speaker phone, according to Fox 5 News.

When the phone was held up to a microphone in the church, Harris sobbed while thanking everyone for their support and saying he was sorry he couldn’t be there.

The crowd showed support for Harris during the service, where the child was buried in a red casket, his favorite color, according to his obituary. The church was decorated with a dozen photos of the child with his parents, Fox 5 News reported.

Harris’ wife Leanna, who gave the eulogy for her son, said she wasn’t angry with her husband, according to Fox 5 News.

“Ross is, was and will be a wonderful daddy, if we have children again,” she said, and those in attendance stood and cheered in response.

Harris said he was supposed to drop his son off at day care that morning, but he didn’t. Harris did stop at a Chick-fil-A in Vinings with his son near The Home Depot headquarters, where he worked as a Web developer for the company, according to the search warrants.

Harris’ son, Cooper, was left in the car from 9:30 a.m. to 4:20 p.m., the warrant says, when his father discovered he was dead while driving to meet friends.

“Justin stated that he was fearful that this could happen,” the warrant stated.

Harris, 33, has been in jail without bond since that day, and his next court appearance is scheduled for July 15.

Police searched Harris’ cellphone and computer. They also looked for trace evidence, such as fingerprints, blood, DNA, hairs or fibers in his car, as well as “paperwork or writings related to the crime of homicide and cruelty to children,” according to the warrant.

Comments
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blublu
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July 08, 2014
Is it or am i the crazy one.... this man researched on the internet about how much degree's it would take to kill a child locked in a car' it seems to me this was premeditated. maybe he feels guilty now looking back at the situation.... i know for sure if it was a black man he would have been treated differently and i am not a black person saying this i know the system and how it works.... am sorry for the innocent baby #my condolences.
odd theory
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June 29, 2014
I am wondering if something happened and they could no longer afford the daycare and they stupidly thought he child would be ok in the car while daddy worked. I know this sounds crazy, but that would be an alternative explanation to the internet searches instead of premeditated murder. Also, given the myriad of other ways they could have killed their child, this still seems too far fetched for premeditated; however, if my theory is correct, it is still murder, just based on stupidity rather than evil.
Cindi S
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June 28, 2014
This time of year when these types of tragedies happen, many people probably do similar research on this particular topic out of curiousity or even dread. A child dying of heat exhaustion in a car ranks high on the list of every responsible parent's worst nightmare.

It seems both sad and cruel that Mr. Harris could not be given police escort to at least attend his only son's funeral for the sake of the family needing closure and to grieve together.

Seriouslyyyyyy
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June 29, 2014
Cobb County Sheriff should escort him out of the state? Hardly. Cruel? Crueler than baking a 22 month old in a car? Get real.
To CindiS
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June 29, 2014
Mr. Harris ate with his son, drove 1/2 a mile, did not drop his son off to daycare, went to his car at lunch, and DID NOT go to pick his son up at daycare, but left work to meet friends. If your normal, EVERY DAY, routine consists of pick up your two year old from daycare after work, do you not find it odd that he just went to meet friends and never stopped at the daycare? That is the smoking gun my friend. He would have gone to the daycare to pick him up, and then realized that he never dropped him off. He knew his son was in the car dead, so I don't feel badly that he didn't get to bury the son he purposely left in the car. Any person who was so scared of this situation happening and Googling it, would not forget their child one minute after strapping them in the car seat!
whatsaywhat?
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June 29, 2014
Are you suffering from a mental deficiency?! I know the guy hasn't had his day in court but there is more then enough evidence for 'probable cause' to hold him. There is an even better chance that he is a sick and guilty creep that caused the cruel and anguishing death of a toddler. If, by chance, he is found innocent, they can always hold a private memorial service for him to attend. Aside from that, he doesn't deserve the privilege of going to the funeral.
Changed routine
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June 28, 2014
If his normal routine was to drop the boy off AND pick him up, why didn't he go to the daycare to pick up his son after work? He clearly knew he didn't drop him off. Sad for that boy!
Popo2
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June 28, 2014
This should be a lesson to those who jumped to a conclusion that the evil police charged a poor innocent man who accidentally left his kid in a car. The petition and money sent confounded me.

I do not work for Cobb Police, but I work closely with them. I can tell you from top to bottom they are a class act and do not act on a whim.
blublu
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July 08, 2014
so ummm explain the "coincidently" searching the web on how much degree it would take to kill a baby/someone in a vehicle... please enlighten me... blow my socks off!!!
Tom O'Donnell
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June 28, 2014
Are you all proud of yourselves now, supporting a man who killed his son in one of the cruelest ways??? And considering her comments today, I think it's time to look at her role in this murder.
blublu
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July 08, 2014
i thought the same thing tom why are people being sympathetic to this man who killed his child premeditatedly.... its sickens my stomach and why isn't mother some what mad at him.... the question i have... is the mother apart of this hideous crime and her husband is foolishly protecting her??
Peggy Anderson
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June 28, 2014
This is such a horrendous crime. It is so sad that he took something that cannot be given back--a life. Where is the child's mother? Nothing has been said about her. What gives?
Mom comment
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June 28, 2014
A normal parent certainly never searches something like this. This guy is pure evil like Lynn Turner. Did he at least give the kid half a bottle of Benadryl to knock him out so his death didn't have to be so painful.

Sorry, bubba every parent knows that once you have kids you don't get to leave work early on Frridays to meet friends at 4:00 and go to Happy Hour.

One of my friends left delta it to work at HD it for 5k more. He rapidly found out he worked well more hours and to make the 5k raise about a -$15k raise then when his parents got made about the buddiy passes it was worse. No one at HD it works 9:30-4:00. I lived around the corner. You learning the starting and leaving times if you want to go anywhere or get your kids any where. I also met my oldest child's father at the pool of those condos 23 years ago, my best friend and he both lived in that complex. Routes and times have never made sense.

You have to get in your car for lunch in that area. My 14 year old walked from the tire store to Panera ( in front of HD) Tuesday, waiting for tires. It took 15-20 minutes each way, sidewalks and crosswalks are missing at parts of the 8 lanes. No one is walking, running or biking this part of the Silver comet trail ( no shade).
Move On
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June 28, 2014
To all you poor slobs that signed the petition to have charges dropped and those that donated money I hope this is a lesson to you, allow the investigators to do their job and the court system. He will have his day in court and hopefully he will burn in hell. No punishment is to harsh for this despicable human being!
blublu
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July 08, 2014
AGREED!
Just Wait
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June 28, 2014
Must not have been much of an IT Tech if he didn't think someone would find this out.
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