Share

Derrick Holmon, 5-Year-Old Michigan Boy With Down Syndrome, Found Dead in Neighbor's Hot Car

By Allie Goolrick
Published: July 13, 2014

The Times Herald

5-year-old Derrick Holmon suffered from Down Syndrome.

A 5-year-old Michigan boy with Down Syndrome was found dead inside a neighbor’s sweltering vehicle on Friday, according to the Detroit Free Press. Derrick Holmon's body was found in a vehicle in Port Huron about seven hours after family members reported him missing.

Police believe that the boy was trapped in the vehicle by accident and overcome with heat. The car’s owners weren’t at home.

(INTERACTIVE: Hot Car Deaths in the U.S. in 2014)

"Temperatures were in the upper 70s during the day in Port Huron with a high of 77 degrees," says weather.com meteorologist Chrissy Warrilow. 

At least 60 law enforcement officers, along with a helicopter and police dogs, joined the search for the boy after an Amber Alert was issued, ABC 7 reports. 

“I want to thank everybody for looking for my baby; he’s in a better place,” Jennifer Miller, Derrick’s mother, told people at the scene after her son was found.

Derrick, nicknamed Little D, was last seen playing at home on Friday morning around 8:30 a.m. The boy was found lying face down on floorboards in the back seat of the car at 5:53 p.m., the Times Herald reports. Family members believe Derrick may have opened the car’s door by himself, and that his death was a tragic accident. 

“This could be a terrible accident, and that’s what they’re explaining to us,” Don McCullough, Derrick’s grandfather, told the Free Press. 

Police Capt. Jeff Baker told the Times Herald in Port Huron that the boy likely succumbed to the heat, though the official cause of death has not been identified. 

"It's heartbreaking for it to end this way,” Baker said.

MORE: Hot Cars Can Be Deadly


Featured Blogs

The 1969 Hurricane Camille Hurricane Party: It Never Happened

By Dr. Jeff Masters
March 4, 2015

Legend has it that many of the 23 residents of the infamous Richelieu Manor Apartments in Pass Christian, Mississippi who chose to stay for Hurricane Camille's landfall on the night of August 17, 1969, held a hurricane party, in defiance of the Category 5 hurricane's might. But the hurricane party never happened.

Devastating Drought Conditions and Annoying People

By Shaun Tanner
February 4, 2015

The drought in California has been pretty devastating and at least some of the people of California seem to be happy about it.

The RRR ‘Ridiculously Resilient Ridge’ Returns to California

By Christopher C. Burt
January 9, 2015

After a very wet first half of December hopes were high that the beginning to the end of California’s years-long drought might finally be at hand. However, virtually no rainfall has fallen across the state since December 18th and none is forecast until at least January 18th. Yet again, a month-long mid-winter dry spell has befallen the state.

Meteorological images of the year - 2014

By Stu Ostro
December 30, 2014

My 9th annual edition.

2013-14 - An Interesting Winter From A to Z

By Tom Niziol
May 15, 2014

It was a very interesting winter across a good part of the nation from the Rockies through the Plains to the Northeast. Let's break down the most significant winter storms on a month by month basis.

What the 5th IPCC Assessment Doesn't Include

By Angela Fritz
September 27, 2013

Melting permafrost has the potential to release an additional 1.5 trillion tons of carbon into the atmosphere, and could increase our global average temperature by 1.5°F in addition to our day-to-day human emissions. However, this effect is not included in the IPCC report issued Friday morning, which means the estimates of how Earth's climate will change are likely on the conservative side.