A 3-year old from Arkansas is now dead while her 15-month old sister is in critical condition after they were found in a hot car as their mother was napping.
The girls’ mother, 21-year-old Kaylee Petchenik, took a nap last Monday afternoon, according to a news release from the Arkansas State Police.
When the mother woke up around 2 p.m. she found her children were missing.
It was then she called the police.
“A Booneville police officer who responded to the residence found the children, both unconscious, lying on the car’s back floorboard,” the press release says.
“Laykn Petchenik was later pronounced dead at a Booneville hospital,” the release continues.
“Her body has been transported to the Arkansas State Crime Laboratory for purposes of an autopsy. [Her 15-month-old sister] remains hospitalized in Little Rock. She is in stable, but critical condition.”
It is unclear how the Petchenik children got inside the vehicle and it is also unclear if they entered the car on their own.
Matthew Wood, a neighbor, told KDRO-TV how Kaylee Petchenik works at night and had allegedly taken a daytime nap.
“She said she had locked her doors and when she woke up the door was open and the kids were gone,” Wood revealed to the station, adding how he was present when the officer found the unresponsive girls.
“We looked down and saw them in the car, but I kind of froze up at the sight,” Wood said. “I’m not going to lie. He opened the door, screamed for EMS and grabbed both of them and rushed them to the hospital.”
It is not clear if Kaylee Petchenik will face charges.
“Special Agents of the Arkansas State Police Criminal Investigation Division are leading the investigation and will submit a case file to the Logan County prosecuting attorney for consideration,” authorities said in the statement.