North Carolina Girl, 8, Dies After Being Left in Hot Car by Mother Who Was Reportedly Working

The mother has since been charged with involuntary manslaughter and child abuse by willful act causing serious injury

<p> Mecklenburg County Sheriff

Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office

Ashlee Stallings.

A woman has been charged after her 8-year-old daughter died when she was "left in a vehicle in hot weather conditions," authorities said.

On Wednesday, June 26, around 6:30 p.m. local time, officers for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department responded to a call in Charlotte, North Carolina, where they discovered the child in critical condition upon arrival, before she was pronounced dead at a local hospital, the department said in a news release.

After the scene was searched and other departments arrived, an investigation from the department's Homicide Unit determined that "the victim was left in a vehicle in hot weather conditions and suffered a medical emergency."

The girl's mother, Ashlee Stallings, 36, has since been charged with involuntary manslaughter and child abuse by willful act causing serious injury. She was transferred to the Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s Office, per the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department.

"The investigation into this case is active and ongoing," the department said, asking anyone with information to get in touch. "As additional information develops, it will be released by the CMPD’s Public Affairs Office."

Related: What to Know About Hot Car Deaths and How to Avoid Them

<p> Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office</p> Mugshot of North Carolina mother Ashlee Stallings

Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office

Mugshot of North Carolina mother Ashlee Stallings

According to the jail's website, Stallings was committed on Thursday, June 27 — the morning after her daughter was pronounced dead at the hospital.

According to ABC News, temperatures in Charlotte previously hit the upper 90s on the day of the incident. The mother told police, per an arrest warrant affidavit obtained by the outlet, that she left the girl in the car with the air on, as she was at work. She reportedly "believed the victim turned the car off because she was cold."

The outlet also reported, citing the affidavit, that Stallings returned to the vehicle an hour and a half after last hearing from the child via text and found her on the car's backseat floorboard, unresponsive and foaming at the mouth.

She reportedly then broke through the car window with a hammer and attempted to drive to a hospital before stopping at a business for help. "She admitted she knew the temperature was 94 degrees outside and that she should not have left the victim inside the car alone," the affidavit read, per ABC News.

<p>Getty</p> A stock photo of a hot car.


A stock photo of a hot car.

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The girl reportedly suffered from brain herniation due to hyperthermia, hospital staff told police, per the affidavit obtained by ABC News.

Stallings is now being held on a $250,000 bond and is scheduled to appear in court next on July 16, per ABC News. It is not immeadly clear if she has legal representation to comment on her behalf.

Related: Prevent Hot-Car Deaths: A Checklist for Parents

Local outlet WSOC said that the mother was an employee for an Amazon facility. The company said that it was  "working closely" with police on the investigation.

"This is an incredibly tragic incident," Amazon said, according to ABC News. "During this difficult time, we're supporting our employees and have made counseling resources widely available.

Nonprofit Kids and Car Safety reports that the latest death marks the fifth confirmed hot car death this year, and the first to take place in North Carolina in 2024. The four other children have died in California, West Virginia, South Carolina and Florida, and have ranged from 2 months old to 6 years old.

If you suspect child abuse, call the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child or 1-800-422-4453, or go to All calls are toll-free and confidential. The hotline is available 24/7 in more than 170 languages.

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