Babysitter accussed of leaving 10-month-old in car for hours with sweltering temperatures

Sheriff Scotty Rhoden of Baker County, Florida, highlighted the tragedy of an infant girl’s death that was caused by a babysitter leaving her in a car that reached sweltering temperatures. Though the 10-month-old’s name was not shared, Rhoden asked the community to respect the victim’s family’s privacy and to join him in prayer for all those involved.

The babysitter, Rhonda Charmane Jewell, 46, had been looking after the girl on and off since June according to investigators. Jewell had arrived at a residence in south Macclenny to babysit other children at 8am, but left the 10-month-old in the car. It was not until 1pm when the victim’s mother arrived to pick up her daughter that Jewell realized the infant had been left in the car. The internal temperature of the car was 133 degrees Fahrenheit with the outside temperature at 98 degrees. Jewell had left the child in the car for at least 5 hours.

The baby was rushed to Fraser Memorial Hospital where she was pronounced dead. Her internal temperature was 110 degrees Fahrenheit, the highest that the thermometer could measure, and her external temperature was 102.1 degrees Fahrenheit. Jewell was charged with aggravated manslaughter of a child and released from the Baker County Detention Center on a $25,000 bond. Her attorney, George Hebert Nelson, declined to comment on the pending case.

Rhoden concluded his Facebook post with a reminder that one’s life can change in a blink of an eye. He asked the community to try to understand the tragedy that occurred in the small town.