Drinking father held in hot-car deaths of his twin toddlers

CARROLLTON, Ga. (AP) — Police say a father charged with manslaughter Friday in the deaths of his 15-month-old twin girls had been drinking before he left them in a hot car in 90-degree temperatures.

This August 2016 photo released by the Carroll County (Ga.) Sheriff shows Asa North. North, a father charged with manslaughter Friday, Aug. 5, 2016, in the deaths of his 15-month-old twin girls had been drinking before he left them in a hot car in west Georgia, police said. Witnesses heard screams and saw Asa North running as he carried the toddlers from the parking lot in front of their home to an inflatable pool out back. Neighbors joined him, frantically trying to revive the girls with water and ice packs. | Photo by Carroll County (Ga.) Sheriff via AP; St. George News
This August 2016 photo released by the Carroll County (Ga.) Sheriff shows Asa North. North, a father charged with manslaughter Friday, Aug. 5, 2016, in the deaths of his 15-month-old twin girls had been drinking before he left them in a hot car in west Georgia, police said. Witnesses heard screams and saw Asa North running as he carried the toddlers from the parking lot in front of their home to an inflatable pool out back. Neighbors joined him, frantically trying to revive the girls with water and ice packs. | Photo by Carroll County (Ga.) Sheriff via AP; St. George News

Witnesses heard screams and saw Asa North running as he carried the toddlers from the parking lot in front of their home to an inflatable pool out back. Neighbors joined him, frantically trying to revive the girls with water and ice packs.

But they were already unresponsive, and soon were declared dead at a nearby hospital.

Outside temperatures were in the 90s on Thursday before police were called at 6:34 p.m. Investigators were trying to determine how long the girls remained in the parked car, but it would take only a few minutes for the heat to become unbearable.

“We do believe alcohol is involved,” said Carrollton police Capt. Chris Dobbs, who identified the girls as Ariel North and Alaynah North. “We do believe the father, sometime throughout the day, he had been consuming alcoholic beverages.”

North, 24, is charged with two counts of involuntary manslaughter and two counts of reckless conduct, Carroll County jail records show. Police were awaiting the results of blood tests to determine his alcohol level. It wasn’t immediately clear whether he had a lawyer who could be contacted for comment.

A man is under arrest in Carrollton, Georgia, west of Atlanta, after his 15 month old twin girls were found in a hot car. Both girls died, Carrollton, Georgia, Aug. 5, 2016 | Photo courtesy of WSB via The Associated Press, St. George News
A man is under arrest in Carrollton, Georgia, west of Atlanta, after his 15 month old twin girls were found in a hot car. Both girls died, Carrollton, Georgia, Aug. 5, 2016 | Photo courtesy of WSB via The Associated Press, St. George News

The girl’s mother was at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta at the time, visiting her sister, who had been in a serious car crash Wednesday, Dobbs said.

“I guess he forgot about the kids and left them in the car,” said Donnie Holland, the twins’ uncle. “He should have took care of them kids better than that, what he did. He should have never been in the house asleep. He should have got the kids out of the car the time he got out of the car, you know.”

It wasn’t immediately clear who discovered the girls in the back of the SUV.

“The neighbors heard some screaming — I guess coming from the father — and saw him running around back with the two children,” Dobbs said. “One of the neighbors got some ice packs out of the freezer and carried it out there.”

Arriving officers performed CPR, but the girls were too far gone. Autopsies were being done at the Georgia Bureau of Investigation crime lab, GBI spokesman Scott Dutton said Friday morning.

A man is under arrest in Carrollton, Georgia, west of Atlanta, after his 15 month old twin girls were found in a hot car. Both girls died, Carrollton, Georgia, Aug. 5, 2016 | Photo courtesy of WSB via The Associated Press, St. George News
A man is under arrest in Carrollton, Georgia, west of Atlanta, after his 15 month old twin girls were found in a hot car. Both girls died, Carrollton, Georgia, Aug. 5, 2016 | Photo courtesy of WSB via The Associated Press, St. George News

The girls are the 25th and 26th children to die this year in hot vehicles, more than double the number by this point last summer, said Janette Fennell, president and founder of KidsAndCars.org, a group that tracks such deaths each year. By this date in 2015, 12 children had died in hot cars, Fennell said in an email Thursday night.

Temperatures inside a car can become deadly very quickly, with 80 percent of the increase happening in the first 10 minutes, her group warns on its website.

The twins died as prosecutors in another metro Atlanta county prepare for the murder trial of Justin Ross Harris, 35, who is accused of intentionally leaving his toddler son to die in a hot SUV for about seven hours in 2014.

Harris’ trial was scheduled for September in the coastal Georgia city of Brunswick after a judge agreed with defense lawyers that an impartial jury could not be found in the Atlanta area.

Written by JOHNNY CLARK, Associated Press. Associated Press Writer Jeff Martin in Atlanta contributed to this story.

Email: news@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.Drinking father held in hot-car deaths of his twin toddlers

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15 Comments

  • RealMcCoy August 5, 2016 at 4:45 pm

    This poor man was not in his right mind! We need a #fundraiser and the Hurricane city non-prosecutor on his case.
    I’m sure he’s suffered enough already.
    #NoChargesItWasAnAccident

  • ladybugavenger August 5, 2016 at 7:05 pm

    This is very sad! It always is sad and shakes our foundation and makes us question everything when children die in hot cars.

    People make excuses for it: it’s alcohol, it’s distraction, it’s some front lobal memory loss due to being out of your normal routine. Those excuses are just that excuses and they are nonsense.

    It comes down to this: people don’t think it can happen to them. That somehow they are better than that and when a person thinks something can’t happen to them they are in big trouble. (Is it pride?)

    Anything can happen to anyone. I say, be paranoid that it can happen to you. Be so extremely aware that it can happen (and anything can happen) and use the paranoia as a protection.

    Stay safe!

    • ladybugavenger August 5, 2016 at 8:26 pm

      Afterthought: replace the word “can’t” with “won’t” because people will believe something can happen and believe that the same thing won’t happen to them- that my friends is pride in my book.

      So what do the social worker, police officer, intoxicated person, the distracted person, the out their routine person etc. whom all have forgotten a child in a hot car and dies have in common? The answer is pride,

  • .... August 5, 2016 at 8:02 pm

    This is so sad that two innocent children are no longer with us because they have had their lives taken from them because of the irresponsible act of a parent. it angers me at the way the judicial system handles the cases of child abuse resulting in death regardless of how or why it happened.
    the father will receive a light sentence I’m sure because it’s obvious he has a drinking problem and it’s societies fault and we are to blame. I don’t necessarily believe in the …. ( eye for an eye ) ..but this. ………….. has no right to be breathing.

  • Real Life August 5, 2016 at 10:20 pm

    Here in Southwestern Utah we have a fundraiser. What is the difference? You bake your kids in a car, you go to jail.

    • Real Life August 5, 2016 at 10:21 pm

      And seriously Dumpster, nobody cares what you think.

      • .... August 6, 2016 at 8:40 am

        Seriously Low Life. ..nobody cares what you think

    • .... August 6, 2016 at 8:40 am

      Nobody cares what you think

    • ladybugavenger August 6, 2016 at 10:40 am

      #fundraiser

    • RealMcCoy August 6, 2016 at 1:29 pm

      Not always. Sometimes you just get the fundraiser, a new front yard done up for you, and a quickly-swept-under-the-rug-no-charges-filed case.

      Ed. ellipsis.

    • .... August 7, 2016 at 7:13 am

      Idiot

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