Warrant reveals new details in case of baby left in hot car in Pineville while foster mom was at work

Warrant reveals new details in case of baby left in hot car in Pineville while foster mom was at work
Dawn Aberson-Vanden Broecke (Pineville Police Department)

PINEVILLE, N.C. (WBTV) - A warrant released Thursday reveals new details about a tragic event in Pineville when who police say a foster mother left a 1-year-old boy in a hot car at a shopping center, ultimately leading to the child’s death.

Dawn Aberson-Vanden Broecke, 42, is charged with involuntary manslaughter. Police said Tuesday that a warrant was obtained for Broecke’s arrest and she was expected to turn herself in - which she did on Wednesday afternoon.

The incident happened less than a week earlier on Thursday, Aug. 29. Officers responded to a 911 call regarding the unresponsive 12-month-old inside a car at the Lowe’s parking lot on McMullen Creek Parkway.

Police say life-saving measures were taken and the baby boy was taken to the hospital by Medic, but was pronounced dead a short time later. On Tuesday, officials said the official cause of death was determined to be hyperthermia due to environmental exposure.

The warrant states that Broecke works at a nearby office and was leaving work to pick up the child at a day care when she realized she had left him in the car since that morning. Broecke then pulled into the Lowe’s parking lot to check on the boy.

When police arrived, firefighters and Medic were already attempting to perform life-saving measures on the boy. The warrant states that when officers approached Broecke and began to question her, “she was standing there and appeared emotionless (she was standing there calm, did not appear upset or otherwise in distress.”

She told officers when she checked on the boy, she “knew that he looked bad, possibly deceased.”

The warrant states Broecke then began to cry and told officers that her wife was on the way. She said the 1-year-old - the youngest of five foster children in her care - had been with her for about six months.

Investigators said on Friday that the baby’s biological mother was not involved in the case.

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