Defense attorney: Dad's story about toddler doesn't add up - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

Defense attorney: Dad's story about toddler doesn't add up

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Justin Harris Justin Harris

A metro Atlanta defense attorney said it is likely that key evidence in the death of a 22-month-old toddler left in his father's car for hours will come out at a hearing next week.

Justin Harris, 34, is facing murder charges after he told police he forgot his son, Cooper, in his car seat while he went to work. Harris said he discovered the toddler as he drove home hours later. An autopsy shows the child died in the sweltering heat.

"The judge is going to want to know from the state, from the prosecution, why is this man charged with first-degree murder, and why is it your position that I should deny him a bond?" said attorney Ray Giudice.

Warrants indicate Harris went to his car at lunch time and put something in it. It is unclear if he noticed his son in the back seat at that time.

Giudice said if Harris did not see Cooper strapped in the back at lunch time, he certainly should have noticed the toddler well before he started driving home from work.

"There is no question based on my experience, by the end of the afternoon when he opened that car door, there is going to be testimony that the temperature of that car and the odor of death would have hit him flush in the face right then," said Giudice.

Cobb County police held a news conference late Wednesday and urged the public not to jump to conclusions in the case.

"Let us do our job," said Officer Mike Bowman. "Let us get the information out there. Don't be so quick to judge. These investigators have worked tirelessly."

Harris has a bond hearing scheduled for July 3.

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