Baby Dies In Greensboro After Being Left In Van

8:36 PM, Oct 3, 2013
GREENSBORO, NC -- Police say that a three-month-old boy, who had been left alone in a van, this afternoon, has died.

Captain Mike Richey told WFMY News 2 that officers received a call around 1 p.m. about a child left in a van at Fanta City International Market, located at 4929 West Market Street.

When they arrived at the scene, they say a group of people were performing CPR on the infant.

The three-month-old boy was pronounced dead at Moses Cone later this afternoon, according to police.

Public Information Officer Susan Danielsen said in a news release that police do not know at this point how long the infant was alone in the vehicle. The infant was secured in his car seat when he was found at the shopping center.

Captain Richey says right now the incident appears accidental.

Police are in the early stages of investigating. Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 336-373-1000.

WFMY News 2's Liz Crawford discovered that 33 children died of heat stroke in a car in 2012 according to KidsAndCars.Org

A child's body heats up 3-5 times faster than an adult because they can't regulate their body temperature. A parked car can reach 125 degrees in just ten minutes, even with the windows cracked.

Lawyer: Parents changed routine on day child died; father charged

Posted: Thursday, October 31, 2013 10:35 pm | Updated: 10:37 pm, Thu Oct 31, 2013.

By Sarah Newell Williamson

GREENSBORO — It’s a daily juggle that goes on in households all over the world without anything going tragically, incomprehensibly wrong.

But for a Whitsett family early last month, that routine ended in the death of a child. Now, 31-year-old Jose Stanlin Fichack faces a charge of involuntary manslaughter in his youngest son’s death.

For the Fichacks, mornings were a race to work, school or day care. Dad and the oldest boy were out the door and on the road right after breakfast. Mom and 3-month-old Nicolas — “Nico” to his family — took a separate car to work. Usually that meant Nico and mom would meet up with dad at a store at the FantaCity International Shopping Center, where they adults work. (This information has been corrected to fix an error, see below. Nov. 1, 9:05 a.m.)

On Oct. 3, the family changed its routine. Mom and the oldest boy spent the morning together to attend a school event.

Nico’s dad strapped the baby into his car seat in the van and headed to work.

It wasn’t until the three adults were together at work later that day that someone asked, “Where’s Nico?”

Several hours after the Fichack family left home that morning, police found Nico dead in a van parked at the shopping center.

At Moses Cone Hospital, doctors would say the child died of heatstroke.

On Wednesday, nearly a month later, police issued an arrest warrant in connection with Nico’s death.

The Guilford County District Attorney’s Office examined evidence from police and the medical examiner’s office before deciding to charge the baby’s father, said Howard Neumann, the chief assistant district attorney.

On Thursday, Jose Fichack turned himself in. He was released on a $50,000 bond.

The child’s mother will not be charged, officials said.

“It was a tragic accident,” Robert O’Hale, Fichack’s attorney, said Thursday. The parents “are forever devastated by it.”

The attorney said both parents and the wife’s brother work at the same business in the FantaCity shopping center, 4929 W. Market St.

“The wife’s brother called 911,” O’Hale said.

Police said the infant was in the car between one and five hours that day.

The temperature in Greensboro was 83 degrees at the time Nico was found, according to the National Weather Service.

A 911 call recorded the rescue efforts of bystanders. The caller said the child was not breathing and asked for an ambulance. A dispatcher gave instructions on performing CPR.

Nicolas was pronounced dead that day at the hospital.

It was unclear Thursday if his older brother remained with the family after the incident. Police would not say, and the Guilford County Department of Social Services does not comment specifically on any case.

However, Steve Hayes, a division director for the agency, said if there is an incident in a home, DSS will look at all of the children.

That is true especially if a child has died.

“If a child died of abuse or neglect, we look at the family for risk of abuse and neglect of other kids,” Hayes said.

“If we get involved for one issue, we look at the whole family.”

Fichack, of 1812 N.C. 61 in Whitsett, faces a possible penalty ranging from 13 months to 59 months in prison, Neumann said.

The sentence range is wide, and at the lower end can be suspended.

According to Neumann, a woman who was found guilty on a similar charge in a previous case was put on probation.

Fichack’s first court appearance is scheduled for Dec. 2 in Guilford County District Court.