Toddler dies after drunken father leaves him in roasting hot car
41-year-old James Koryor wept in court after hearing police say that he got drunk and left his toddler son in a hot car, in which the child died.
Koryor was arrested yesterday on manslaughter and child abuse charges after police determined that he went to an off license with his 2 year old, bought a bottle of gin, drank it on the way home and fell asleep inside his house, leaving the boy strapped in the car.
The toddler, Alpha Koryor, was left behind in the car, and detectives found signs the child had struggled to get out of the vehicle before dying.
Temperatures in the Phoenix area of Arizona topped 90 degrees (32 degrees) on Tuesday
Reports indicate that Alpha’s 5-year-old brother either got out of the vehicle by himself or was taken inside by his father, police spokesman Sgt. Trent Crump said.
Family members asked where his little brother was, and he said the child was asleep, Crump said.
"I think the assumption on their part was that he was probably in the house and he had gone to take a nap," Crump said.
Crump said the boy's mother found Alpha unconscious in the back seat of the car a couple hours later. The boy was taken to a hospital and died.
Koryor made an initial court appearance on Tuesday, where a judge set a $50,000 bond and assigned the case to the public defender’s office. He didn’t have a lawyer at the hearing.
The sobbing father told the judge he didn’t have money to post bond. He struggled to keep his composure, and at one point the judge offered him a box of tissues as he sobbed.
Prosecutors argued for higher bail, saying Koryor has extensive ties to Liberia, Ivory Coast and Ghana and could flee.
The judge stressed that Koryor cannot consume any alcohol in the event he posts bond.
"That means you cannot have any alcohol inside any residence that you stay," the judge said. "None. It has to be immediately removed. All of this is to ensure the safety of your family and of the community, and frankly I'd like to ensure that you are protected from yourself."