Georgia father researched child death in hot car on Internet: reports

Georgia father researched child death in hot car on Internet: reports

Justin Ross Harris, 33, of Marietta, Georgia is shown in this booking photo provided by the Cobb County Sheriff's office on June 25, 2014. REUTERS/Cobb County Sheriff's Office/Handout via Reuters

Laila Kearney, Reuters

Jun 28, 2014 , Last Updated: 12:35 PM ET

A Georgia father charged with murder after leaving his 22-month-old son in a sweltering car for seven hours told police he had researched how hot a vehicle needed to be to kill a child, according to reports released on Saturday.
Justin Harris, 33, told police he conducted the Internet research because he was afraid his son might die in an overheated vehicle, local media reports citing a police search warrant said.
"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. Justin stated that he was fearful that this could happen," the search warrant said, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and other media.
Cobb County police spokesman Mike Bowman told Reuters he could not confirm the information was included the search warrant.
Details from a police interview with Harris were released the same day that family and friends gathered in Alabama for a funeral for the child, who a medical examiner ruled had died of heat stroke.
Harris was being held without bail, charged with felony murder and second-degree child cruelty in the death in an Atlanta suburb on June 18.
The case has drawn wide interest after reports of an emotional scene of Harris pulling into a shopping center parking lot on his way home from work and appearing to frantically try to revive his son.
The boy was left strapped in his rear-facing car seat in the back seat of the SUV while Harris went to work.
That day, temperatures in the Atlanta area reached 92 degrees Fahrenheit (33 degrees Celsius), according to the National Weather Service.
Police said during his lunch hour, Harris went to his office parking lot, placed something in his SUV through the driver's side door and then returned to his office.

Georgia father researched child death in hot car on Internet: reports (external - login to view)

If he did this purposefully, bastard should suffer eternal torment. What a sickening piece of trash.
Sounds like he did
'He wanted me to make him a naughty old man'; Teen admits sexting with man whose child died in hot car
First posted: Monday, October 17, 2016 09:35 PM EDT
BRUNSWICK, Ga. — An Alabama teenager exchanged sexually explicit messages with a Georgia man accused of intentionally leaving his 22-month-old son in a hot SUV to die, she testified Monday.
The 17-year-old girl said she and Justin Ross Harris exchanged photos of their genitals and sexual messages weeks before the death of his son, Cooper, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported (external - login to view).
They began exchanging messages a couple of years ago, the girl testified.
During testimony, prosecutor Chuck Boring showed jurors the photo of Harris’ ***** that was sent to the girl.
Prosecutors say Harris intentionally killed Cooper by leaving him for hours in a vehicle parked outside his workplace. Harris’ lawyers called the death accidental.
Harris moved from Tuscaloosa, Alabama to Georgia in 2012 to take a job with The Home Depot’s corporate office. He faces life in prison if convicted of murder.
Allegations that Harris had sexually explicit online conversations with an underage girl are completely unrelated to the murder and child cruelty charges he faces in the death of his son, defence attorney Maddox Kilgore has said previously.
But prosecutors contend that those alleged actions can provide evidence of a motive for the murder charges and can demonstrate Harris’ state of mind leading up to and on the day of the boy’s death.
The 17-year-old, whose identity was shielded by Judge Mary Staley Clark, was 15 years old at the time she and Harris began exchanging sexual messages, according to Monday’s testimony.
They first began communicating with one another on the anonymous service called Whisper and later on another service called Kik, the Journal-Constitution reported.
Eventually, the girl told Harris she was actually 15 years old, but that didn’t deter him from continuing their conversation, she told jurors.
“He told me he wanted me to make him a naughty old man,” she testified, adding he said he wanted to have sex with her.
'He wanted me to make him a naughty old man'; Teen admits sexting with man whose
Whether the death is intentional, the jury is still out on that one. It could be a coincidence that he looked up child deaths online to avoid the same problem but to no avail as he became careless. Guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, after all.

But, even if found not guilty of murder, looks like he could still get manslaughter. And even if he gets away with that for some reason, I can already see anothother hearing for his relationship with the fifteen year old.

So even if he can't be proved guilty, he'll be sitting in a courtroom for a while yet.
Justin Ross Harris, whose son died in hot car, sought naked selfies from teen, sent her ***** pics, she testifies
'When it started, it was strictly sexual. Then at times it would be like a normal conversation'
First posted: Friday, October 21, 2016 04:51 PM EDT | Updated: Friday, October 21, 2016 05:50 PM EDT
BRUNSWICK, Ga. — A Georgia man swapped sexual text messages with a teenage girl while his toddler son sat dying in the back seat of the father’s sweltering SUV, his young texting partner testified in court Friday.
Jurors at the trial of Justin Ross Harris also watched police video Friday of Harris just a few hours after his 22-month-old son, Cooper, died. In a police interrogation room, Harris and his wife discuss having more children. Before that, Harris tells detectives: “I’m a great father.”
Harris, 35, is charged with murder in the little boy’s death. He’s also charged with sending graphic, sexual text messages and photos of his ***** to a girl for a period of several months when she was 16 and 17.
That young woman, now 19, testified Friday she met Harris online in the fall of 2013 when he responded to a comment she posted on the app Whisper stating she wanted a sexual relationship like the one in the erotic novel Fifty Shades of Grey.
“When it started, it was strictly sexual,” the witness said of her relationship with Harris. “Then at times it would be like a normal conversation.”
They never met in person, but Harris knew her age and that she was in high school, the young woman testified. She sent him one of her prom photos, she said, and would tell him about her efforts to choose a college.
In a transcript of their text messages that the young woman read in court, Harris once asked for a photo of her breasts and she replied: “I’m at school.”
They also discussed sex acts they wanted to perform together, and Harris would send her photos of his *****. A prosecutor showed four photos to the jury. She said he asked her to send him photos of her genitals “countless” times, but she never did.
“There wasn’t any pressure applied to you to participate in this, is that fair to say?” defence attorney Maddox Kilgore asked the young woman.
“Yes,” she replied.
Prosecutor Chuck Boring noted that Georgia law makes the girl’s consent irrelevant because she was a minor.
The Associated Press doesn’t identify victims of sex crimes and isn’t identifying the young woman, who was underage when the explicit messages were sent. The judge also has barred news organizations from broadcasting her voice and likeness to protect her identity.
Prosecutors say Harris, who had moved to metro Atlanta from Alabama in 2012, killed his young son intentionally because he wanted to escape the responsibilities of being a husband and father. Several women have testified to having sexual relationships with Harris, online and in person, while he was married.
Authorities say Harris’ son died June 18, 2014, after being left in his car seat for about seven hours while Harris was at his job as a web developer for Home Depot. Harris had taken his son to eat breakfast that morning. His defence attorneys called the death a tragic accident, saying Harris forgot to drop Cooper off at daycare and drove straight to work.
That day, Harris was texting the teenage girl from his workplace, according to transcripts read in court Friday. At about 2 p.m., he asked for a photo of her breasts.
“I’m super sunburned,” the witness read from the transcript, saying she sent a photo regardless.
Harris replied: “Yummy.”
Hours later, after Harris pulled his dead son from his SUV, he was taken to Cobb County police headquarters. Jurors saw video Friday of Harris sobbing as he waited to speak with detectives.
“I’m so sorry, Cooper!” he bawled.
Harris appears more composed as he talks with detectives. He calmly debates with them after being told he will be charged with child cruelty, a felony.
“It was completely unintentional,” Harris says. “I’ve no history of child abuse. I’ve no history of domestic violence. ... I’m a great father.”
That evening, police recorded Harris in the same interview room with his wife, Leanna. It’s their first meeting since their son died. She tries to comfort Harris as he weeps.
Near the end of the 40-minute video, she asks Harris if he will be willing to have more children.
“I want to have a family,” Harris says, before adding, “I’m just going to miss him.”
Harris’ wife was granted a divorce earlier this year.
Harris’ trial was moved from Cobb County in the Atlanta suburbs, to the coastal port city of Brunswick because of pretrial publicity. The judge told jurors Friday she expects the trial, which began Oct. 3, to last three to four more weeks.
Justin Ross Harris, whose son died in hot car, sought naked selfies from teen, s
A Cobb County father has been found guilty of murder in his son’s hot car death.

After several days of deliberations, jurors convicted Ross Harris on all counts, including malice murder, 2 counts of felony murder and several other charges.

Channel 2’s Ross Cavitt and Carl Willis are in Brunswick, where the trial is being held. They will have updates from inside the courtroom on Channel 2 Action News starting at 4 p.m.

Harris’ 22-month-old son, Cooper, died on June 18, 2014, when Harris left him inside his SUV outside his office for nearly seven hours.

Prosecutors argued that it was intentional. They said Harris was living a double life and wanted to escape his family life to be “the other Justin Ross Harris.” During trial, they brought in multiple women who were sexting with Harris on the day of Cooper’s death, including a minor and a woman Harris claimed to love. Prosecutors said Harris wanted to live that life full time, but wouldn’t leave his wife as long as his son was alive.

The defense said despite Harris’ moral failures, he loved his son and would never intentionally hurt him. They argued that it was just a tragic, horrible accident and Harris was devastated by Cooper’s death.

Detectives testified during trial that they became suspicious because of Harris statements and actions during his interview with police. Harris was arrested at the scene and charged with murder that same day. In the interview room, Harris argued with detectives, telling them he didn’t understand why he was being charged because “there was no malicious intent.”

Harris’ trial was originally scheduled to begin in May in Cobb County, but after weeks of jury selection, the defense argued that they would not be able to find an unbiased jury and requested a change of venue.

The judge granted that request and the trial was moved to Brunswick, Georgia, in Glynn County.

Jury selection began again in September and a jury was seated in less than two weeks. The trial began on Oct. 3.

After 22 days of testimony and 70 witnesses, 52 for the state and 18 for the defense, the jury began its deliberations.
Sentencing will likely take place in Cobb County at a later time.

The District Attorney's Office said Harris is facing a maximum of life in prison without parole plus an additional 40-plus years.


Ross Harris guilty: Georgia father convicted of murder in son’s hot car death | WSB-TV (external - login to view)
A judge sentenced Ross Harris, 36, to life without parole plus 34 years, but he will get credit for the two years he has already served.

“(This was) a horrendous, horrific experience for this 22-month-old child who had been placed in the trust of his father and in violation and dereliction of duty to that child, if not love of that child, callously walked away and left that child in a hot car in June in Georgia in the summer to swelter and die," Judge Mary Staley said in court Monday.

ROSS HARRIS: Georgia father sentenced to life in prison in son's hot car death | WSB-TV (external - login to view)

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