More details are coming out about the tragic death of 22-month-old Cooper Harris, who died in a hot car while his father, Justin Ross Harris, was sexting several women. Harris is being charged with murder. He says that he forgot to drop off his child at daycare. One thing that has always puzzled those following the case is how Harris couldn't have seen his child in the back seat -- especially after he dropped light bulbs off in the car during his lunch break. But Cooper's car seat was rear-facing, and the defense will likely use that as the reason why he didn't see his son sitting there. However, should he have been in a rear-facing seat?
Investigators say that Cooper had outgrown his car seat by "several inches" and his head was clearly over the top of it. However, many parents continue to use rear-facing seats after a child can legally be put into a forward-facing seat.
What is more troublesome is that authorities say that Cooper already had a front-facing seat, one that was bought six weeks before his death. However, his parents had reportedly either switched back to the old seat or kept him in it despite having the new one.
Perhaps the parents had a difficult time installing it and decided against it for the time being. Which is terrible because if Harris's version of events is true, a front-facing car seat could have saved his life.
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On the other hand, if the prosecutors' version of events is true, then having a rear-facing car seat would be the perfect "cover" for what happened. Harris could much more plausibly claim that the boy couldn't be seen in the rear-facing seat.
If it comes out that the Harris family switched the car seat for no good reason, the case could hinge on it.
Do you think Cooper in a rear-facing seat is significant to the case?
Image via Cobb County Sheriff's Dept.