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2 year old dies in tragic accident (MI)


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2-year-old boy dies after baby sitter allegedly crashed her car, never reported it to police



ROSEVILLE, Mich. (FOX2) - A mother and father are mourning the loss of their child who died after a babysitter crashed her car.


Gerald Redmond is comforted by his daughter, Jayla. Her parents are devastated, angry, and missing her 2-year-old brother.


Jeremiah was found unresponsive at his babysitter's home in Roseville Sunday morning.


"You put two toddlers and a seven-year-old in complete danger and after your accident, you did nothing as an adult to make sure these kids were going to be fine," Redmond said.


"I had to get a phone call letting me know my son is dead," said Jessica Johnson, his mother.


Johnson had dropped off Jayla and twins Josiah and Jeremiah at the babysitter's house Saturday evening. The next thing she knew, police were calling Sunday morning - Jeremiah was dead.


It is alleged the 33-year-old babysitter was in a car accident overnight, with the kids in the car, with no car seats and that's not all.


"My daughter said there wasn't enough seat belts, so somebody was out of a seatbelt back there, and she hit a tree," Redmond said.  "Instead of her calling 911, she called a tow truck."


Redmond says the babysitter called someone to tow her car back to her home in Roseville. Jayla says Jeremiah was crying - and Jayla had a bruised and bloody face. You can still see her injuries.


"She got jarred around pretty bad," Redmond said. "She said the babysitter pulled a bag of frozen potatoes out and had her put that on her face and go to sleep."


Jayla used the frozen food as an icepack and the children went to bed. But in the morning Jeremiah didn't wake up.

"He should still be alive - he had a chance," Johnson said. "He was still alive after the accident took place."


Roseville police say they were called to the babysitter's home Sunday morning for an unresponsive child. They are working with another jurisdiction to determine exactly where the accident happened and waiting on autopsy results to determine how Jeremiah died.


But Redmond wants her charged with leaving the scene of an accident and child endangerment - right now.

"Nine-one-one should have been called, the tow truck driver when he arrived there,  he shouldn't have moved that vehicle," Redmond said. Then my son has to die because someone that night was hiding something."


It turns out this woman has a long list of traffic offenses including accidents, drugs and alcohol. Her license was just reinstated earlier this month..


Roseville police are in the early stages of their investigation and are asking anyone with information on this case to contact them right away.



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Lawyer Up the Tow Truck Driver and Company will be named in the pending lawsuit.


It's tragic for all involved. I find this happens far to often when drivers generally under the influence or with prior driving convictions are involved in an accident. It's a warning sign rather than a pay day when they do not want to involve the police.


I am sure this Tow Truck Driver is devastated that they did not protect these young lives. When children are involved, I am even more involved then I normally would be, it's like being on steroids. Protect those who cannot protect themselves, yeah it goes with the territory of being a Professional Tow Truck Operator.

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I am very saddened to hear that this family lost a little one to someones negligence. I cant imagine what they are going through As well as the anguish the operator must be feeling now knowing a child died from this..

Without knowing what the operator came across or knew at the time of the tow I dont want to pass judgement just yet. It does sound as though this accident was serious enough to justify a police presence at the scene. 

It could be possible that she had someone pick up the children prior to the tow trucks arrival and without seeing any car seats inside he may have been unaware that there was children involved. 

I am always very leery of people calling to have their vehicle towed from an accident scene directly to their homes and always use caution to examine the circumstances before commiting to do so. If I have the slightest inkling a person is trying to hide something, is impaired or there is any type of property damage, even if someones grass got tore up, the police are called immeadiatly. I dont care how much they are willing to pay.

I hope for the operators sake, this woman was very good at hiding what happened to the operator and he can prove he knew nothing of the childs injuries, Let alone that any children were involved. 

Like TowZone said, Lawyer up and Lawyer up good my friend... It is gonna be a rough ride.. 

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This incident strikes the heart of the industry where there are no formal standards of training, no professional standards, or topic specific training to address these kinds of calls. In all honesty, have you or any tow companies EVER provided in-house training specific to this situation? My guess is , "No." Are there any written training standards specific to handling these kinds of events? My guess also is, "No." 


What about an illegally parked car with an unoccupied car seat inside it? Should towers immediately call the police to have the vehicle unlocked and searched before it gets towed? Is this a solid reason to turn the call-down? Minimally, seeing a child with fresh injuries might be reason enough to call the police; let them tell you if there's merit to them responding. Perhaps this comes down to the basic premise of what's right and wrong? 


Here's where law comes to play, for example: California's 22008 (a) , in-part says, "The driver of a vehicle, other than a common carrier vehicle, involved in any accident resulting in injuries to or death of any person shall within 24 hours after the accident make or cause to be made a written report of the accident to the Department of the California Highway Patrol or, if the accident occurred within a city, to either the Department of the California Highway Patrol or the police department of the city in which the accident occurred. If the agency which receives the report is not responsible for investigating the accident, it shall immediately forward the report to the law enforcement agency which is responsible for investigating the accident." Could this be part of the care giver's defense? Note:  In many cities, traffic accident reports are a courtesy at the time of occurrance where a police agency doesn't have to be present; each being a case by case evaluation. 


Like Ron said, it's tragic for all involved, especially the child's parents. I feel their anger and drive to find answers and accountibility. It's a horrible feeling to know the tower could be held minutely responsible for doing his job and (possibly) making a wrong error in judgement, but the culpability of the child care provider is what initially caused this child's death. And, we don't know what was told by the vehicle's driver to the tow company dispatcher OR the tow operator? She may have told the tower that she already contacted the owner of the tree or damaged property. I believe that regardless as to what's what on-the-scene, my drivers know to call the police as a CYA move, epecially when there's property damage and injuries. I agree with Grumps not to pass judgement, but, I'm feeling a need to write an article to cover this and similar situations. I think it smart to understand the wording of your state's, "accident reporting requirements", and see what specific wording and actions might be required in your state.         R.

Edited by rreschran
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Randall C. Resch

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I rarely comment, but what's to say she didn't call someone to pick up the kids before the tow operator got there? They said there were no car seats, and I would hope an accident with kids involved and no car seats an operator would call the police if not just straight dial 911.  This saddens me tremendously as I have a 3 year old sassy lady and couldn't even imagine a world without her. My heart hurts for the family and I hope justice is found.

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Reminds me of this story near me. Very different circumstances but similar very sad loss. The grandmother was charged a few days later with causing death. Not sure if the police ended up speaking to the owmer of the parked truck.


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CYA is ever more important these days:


"regardless as to what's what on-the-scene, my drivers know to call the police as a CYA move, especially when there's property damage and injuries."


It is far better to let's say pass the buck. Calling the police in such situations can release the company and driver from any liability. Had that been done due to property damage or an unreported accident can mean the difference in __________ .

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I have always felt It is critical that Operators Look at the whole picture when arriving on any scene. People are sneaky and will do and say whatever to hide what they are doing. Of course the bottom line of what we do is to make money and because of that many turn a blind eye to anything that doesnt pertain to making that dollar. Especially commission-paid  guys.


I come across people all the time that try to lie about what or why they ended up in the ditch or smashed through someones mailbox. Like most any other circumstance in this industry, a high level of common sense and alertness to the entire picture before you is required. I am really hoping that this particular operator was "duped" by this evil woman and was not privy to the cover up. Our industry has enough bad publicity and we certainly don't need this type of cover up added as fuel on the proverbial fire.


I will share a rather embarrassing story of a situation that happened to me last winter where my fatigue, complacency for a regular customer and in-attention to the situation almost turned into a big issue for me.


I got a call one very early morning from a regular customer who stated he broke a ball joint on his Honda Pilot and needed it towed to a local repair shop. He was not with the vehicle but the keys were in it and it was just off the corner of a particular road and off to the side so it was not in any live lanes. The road was a mild residential area so at this time of the morning no one would really be on it anyway.


I pulled up to the front of the truck and at a quick glance, I could see that the right front wheel was distended. I proceeded to hook the vehicle up, skate the right front wheel up and on the deck, Strapped it down and hauled it down to the repair shop. Keep in mind, It was dark ( about 2am if I remember right ) Very cold And I had jumped out of bed after working 14 hours the day earlier to do this tow so I really wasn't on top of my game so to speak. Truth be told, I was half asleep. I off loaded the truck, dropped the keys in the after hours box and headed home.


About 7 am I received a call from the local police department asking me if I had towed a "black truck" last night from a particular street with body damage. Again, I was tired and thrown off when he said "black truck" and didn't put 2 and 2 together because the vehicle I towed was a grey SUV and I didn't see any obvious body damage on it when i towed it either. It was nearby that neighborhood but not on the particular street they had mentioned so I said no I did not.


A few hours later, P.D. called me for a rotation tow from the street they had asked me about earlier. I went over there and saw there were 5 cars that were parked on the side of the road that had been sideswiped. This was about a half mile down the road and around the corner from where I had picked up the Pilot at 2am. Then it hit me like a brick to the face... He had slammed into these cars, managed to make it up the road and around the corner before the SUV quit moving.


I Instantly told the officer on scene that I think the SUV I towed last night was the vehicle that caused this. I brought them over to the repair shop I towed it to and behold there was damage along the running board, door and of course the wheel that I simply didn't notice that morning. Turns out the guy was drunk as a skunk, hit all those cars on his way home from the bar, got it around the corner and even pulled off the side molding that was hanging on the right side off I assume so that I wouldn't notice the damage. His fancy dash cam with audio had all the evidence including him getting in the car and telling someone he was "hammered" before leaving the bar. It also had footage of me loading and off loading the vehicle as well as audio of me grumbling to myself that I should have left the damn thing there till the morning instead of coming out at that hour to tow it.  


The dash cam powered up when I turned the key on to put it in neutral. I felt like a complete moron. Luckily for me, the video of me meandering around and taking my time while loading gave the detective working the case the impression that I was completely unaware of any wrong doing on the drivers part and thankfully I only got looked at like an Idiot for a few weeks by all the P.D. guys instead of getting in any sort of trouble.


So, My point is you gotta pay attention to the whole situation ALL the time. even if it is a job for a regular customer. They will Lie just like any other person would to cover their own a$$. If I had noticed the damage on the SUV, I would have most certainly called the police.  


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