DCFS Investigating After Child Left in Hot Car in Joliet

The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services says it's investigating after a 7-month-old baby was left in a hot car in west suburban Joliet for about two hours Tuesday. 

A spokesperson for the department said an investigation is pending and the department has not had any prior contact with the family. 

Joliet Police Deputy Chief Alan Roechner said Wednesday that nurses at the Advocate Christ Medical Center reported the baby's prognosis "looks promising" and his condition is improving. 

Police say the 7-month-old baby was left alone in a car in a Joliet Public Library parking lot at 22 W. Clinton St. following a miscommunication between the infant's parents.  

The baby's mother was in a car with her boyfriend and three children -- a 3-year-old, a 12-year-old and the 7-month-old -- when she said she dropped them off at their Joliet home, according to Joliet Police Deputy Chief Alan Roechner.

"She thought that the father had taken the 7-month-old out of the vehicle," Roechner said. 

The mother then went downtown to go to a 10 a.m. meeting at a title company and left the vehicle unaware the baby was inside, he said.

At about noon, after the meeting ended, she received a message from her boyfriend asking where the child was and realized the infant may have been left in the vehicle, Roechner said. She then found the baby unresponsive and not breathing inside the vehicle and yelled for help.

The infant's internal temperature was more than 108 degrees when paramedics arrived, Roechner said. First responders were able to revive the child at the scene and took him to Presence Saint Joseph Medical Center. The child went into cardiac arrest at the hospital and was later transferred to Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn, where he was initially listed in “very critical” condition. 

"It's definitely a tragic event no matter how you look at it," Roechner said. 

No charges or citations were filed as of Tuesday afternoon. Joliet Police said an investigation is ongoing. 

Contact Us