Mother’s second child dies after allegedly being left in car for hours

Posted at 4:41 PM, May 30, 2013
and last updated 2013-05-31 07:57:35-04

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WTVR) - The two-and-a-half-month-old baby girl being treated at VCU Medical Center, after sources said she and her brother were left in a car, died Thursday afternoon.

The baby's mother, Brittney Downing, was charged with two counts of felony child neglect on May 28, 2013, according to Henrico Police spokeswoman Lt. Linda Toney Downing's 20-month-old son died over the weekend.

Henrico Police became involved when they were contacted by Prince George County Police, regarding the suspicious death of 20-month-old Jelani A. Downing-Batson.

On Tuesday, sources told CBS 6 senior reporter Wayne Covil that Downing left her children in her vehicle while she worked at a Glen Allen hotel on Sunday. On Thursday, Henrico Police said their investigation centered around events that occurred on May 26, 2013, at a hotel in the 10600 block of Telegraph Road.

Downing called 911 just before 6 p.m. on Sunday and said her oldest child was in the bedroom and unresponsive. When the emergency crews arrived, they pronounced the 20-month-old dead and said a 2-month-old infant in the apartment was “experiencing problems.”

The baby girl was rushed to VCU Medical Center where she was on a ventilator in critical condition for days.

Downing, 22, turned herself in to Henrico Police Tuesday morning. She will be held without bond pending her next court appearance.

CBS 6 also found that Downing faces other legal troubles, in three other counties.

In Chesterfield County she’s due in court June 10 for Misdemeanor Larceny. In Colonial Heights she’s due in court June 19 for felony obtaining money under false pretense.

In Henrico County she’s due in court July 17 for speeding and driving under a revoked license; her second offense.

Henrico police said their investigation continues. At the foot of the door of Downing’s apartment is a growing memorial for her two young children.

"It's a loss that's not natural,” said neighbor Kenyata Tyler.  “I'm very saddened for her because I know she didn't do it on purpose.  I know she had to have done it in desperation."

Outside Henrico's Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court Wednesday Downing's uncle stepped in front of cameras and said the tragedy has put his family in a state of distress.

"She has to take full responsibility,” said her uncle Antoine Scott.  “I know she's asked God for forgiveness. I know she's working on maintaining a psychology about her."

Police asked if you have information about the case or if you saw the mother and her two children on Sunday, to call Crime Solvers at 804-733-2777.