COMMON CORE TOWN HALL MEETINGKIDS LEFT IN HOT CARDOG VIGIL GOES VIRALBATHROOM SPY CAM
WTVC NewsChannel 9 :: News - Top Stories - Disturbing Details Revealed in 'Hot Car Death' Bond Hearing
Updated:
Thursday, July 3 2014, 07:20 PM EDT
Disturbing Details Revealed in 'Hot Car Death' Bond Hearing
Shock and disbelief were the primary emotions felt by spectators Thursday in Cobb County, Georgia, near Atlanta, as disturbing details were revealed in a hearing for Justin Ross Harris, the father accused of murdering his young son by leaving him in a hot car.

Harris did not phone police about his son until several hours later, in the early evening.

Rerevealed by police in court: that Harris and his wife had been having marital problems, and that text message records on his cellphone show him reaching out to several women who weren't his wife, including a minor to whom police say he texted a nude image of himself. In fact, police say Harris was sexting other women while he was in the car with his son.

Cobb County Police Detective Phil Stoddard testified that under questioning the night of the death, Harris said he forgot to take the boy to day care. Stoddard says Harris routinely took the boy to day care in the mornings. He also said Harris was extremely specific recounting the details of his day.

Stoddard says Harris' wife Leanne came to the day care the afternoon the boy died, June 18, and was told the child wasn't there. According to witnesses, she then said her husband must have left the toddler in the car. After learning of the death, Leanne Harris's mother told investigators she had asked her why she wasn't crying. She responded that she 'must be in shock.' Leanne Harris also reportedly said to Harris in front of investigators, 'Did you say too much?'

Stoddard says Harris and Cooper stopped at a nearby Chik-fil-A for breakfast, a trip he made often enough for employees to recognize him. They said employees noted that Cooper seemed awake and happy at the time. Harris then drove just over a half mile to his workplace.

Cooper was in a rear-facing car seat in the middle of the back of Harris's car. Stoddard testified that that seat was in Harris's line of sight any time he turned to the right. Stoddard said the boy was technically too big for the car seat.

Harris told investigators he kissed Cooper after putting him in car after breakfast. He also said he had originally planned on seeing a movie with co-workers when he got off work.

Attorney Maddox Kilgore says his client had lunch with two friends the day the boy died and then came back to his SUV to put a couple of light bulbs he had purchased inside the vehicle.

Kilgore says Harris wouldn't have led his friends right up to the car if he had left the boy inside intentionally. Kilgore also said Harris had texted his wife later that afternoon, asking when she was going to pick up their son.

Later in the evening, when Harris says he first discovered Cooper's body, police say he took him out of the car and laid him on the ground. He then grabbed his cellphone as a witness performed CPR. Harris first called his wife, and then called Home Depot, where he worked.

Detectives said Harris showed no emotion as they questioned him about Cooper's death.

Detectives also got access to evidence of a dysfunctional marriage after searching Harris's cellphone. They saw that Harris was 'sexting' several women on messaging app Kik - including a 16-year-old girl. He expressed interest in meeting up with them.

Messages uncovered on the phone showed evidence that Leanne Harris was aware of the infidelities.

More details were revealed when officers checked Harris' work computer. Among them:

  • He searched the website Reddit for videos of "people who die."
  • He visited a Reddit website called "Child Free."
  • He searched the internet using the phrase "how to survive prison."
  • He searched the internet for the age of consent in Georgia.
  • He searched the internet for information on heat-related deaths of animals, 5 days before Cooper's death.
Harris is charged with murder in connection with his child's death. Detectives at Thursday's hearing say given the evidence they've received, he also may soon be facing charges of sexual exploitation of a minor.

As of Thursday afternoon, police have not charged Leanne Harris with anything.

After several hours of testimony, the judge found probable cause based on the testimony, saying at the very least Harris was guilty of neglect. The judge denied bond, so he'll remain in custody until his next hearing.

Depend on NewsChannel9 to have more on this story as details continue to emerge.

WSB-TV contributed to this report.Disturbing Details Revealed in 'Hot Car Death' Bond Hearing

Advertise with us!

Related Stories

  • TN/GA Regional News
  • National News
  • International News
  • WTVC :: Community - The Good Life

    The Good Life

    Celebrating the events, adventures and activities that represent "The Good Life" in the NewsChannel 9 viewing area.
  • WTVC :: Community - Sideroads

    Sideroads

    Take a ride with Brian Smith to explore the unique people and places to be found along the Sideroads of the NewsChannel 9 viewing area.
  • WTVC :: Community - Road Trippin

    Road Trippin

    Come Road Trippin' with us and see all the great sites in your area!
  • WTVC :: Community - Closings and Delays

    Closings and Delays

    These are the latest School and Business Closings reported to NewsChannel 9. If you see errors or need to add a school or business, call 423-757-7320.
  • WTVC :: Community - Educator of the Year

    Educator of the Year

    Vote now on your favorite candidate teacher for the Educator of the Year!
  • WTVC :: Community - Wednesday's Child

    Wednesday's Child



  • WTVC :: Community - Deaf & Hard of Hearing

    Deaf & Hard of Hearing

    Information provided to NewsChannel 9 by members of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Community.
  • WTVC :: Community - Community Calendar

    Community Calendar



  • WTVC :: Community - Photo Galleries

    Photo Galleries



  • WTVC :: Community - Sponsored Events

    Sponsored Events

    Check Back Often for NewsChannel9 Sponsored Events!

NewsChannel9 Top Stories

"Made in Tennessee" Ad Campaign Made in Missouri

4 Kids Left Unattended in Hot Car, Mother Charged with Neglect

Family of Deaf Couple Sues Erlanger Hospital

Unwelcome 'Art' at Dalton's Creative Arts Guild

FAA Extends Travel Ban to Israel for Another 24 Hours

Cross Burned Outside Clarksville Church

Dog Vigil Goes Viral

Demolition Graffiti Party

Our Wednesday Facebook Friend of the Day

Senior Center at East Gate

GMC Mid-Morning Update for Wednesday

Bradley Co Accident Shuts Down Roadway

Georgia Primary Election Runoff Results

Chattanooga's Noise Ordinance: Turn The Volume Up?

Spy Camera Found in Downtown Chattanooga Bathroom

Churches Vandalized, What Tipped Elders Off

Inspector Addresses Parking Garage Safety Concerns

The Political Landscape of Common Core

EPB Releases Findings of Street Light Audit

Chrysler Issues Jeep Recall

Spy Camera Found in Chattanooga Business Bathroom

Neighbors Throw Rocks on Man's Window to Tell Him Apartment is on Fire

Cleveland Gas Station Robbed

Car Plows into Cleveland Business

Child Removed from Home with Meth Lab

Local Group Aims to Help Families with Kids Heading to School

Generous Donation Helps Local Farmers Market

Report: Tennessee Children's Well-Being Improving

Citing Security Concerns, U.S. Airline Companies Scrap All Israel Flights

Catoosa Police Publish Home Invasion Suspect Sketch

Federal Appeals Court Deals Health Care Law Major Blow

GA Voters Head to the Polls in Primary Runoff

Mysterious White Flags Replace American Flags on Brooklyn Bridge

Our Tuesday Facebook Friend of the Day

Prince George Turns 1!

GMC Mid-Morning Update for Tuesday

Third Congressional District Candidates Speak At UTC Forum

Man Sought for Stealing from Children's Miracle Network

Calvin Digs Deeper Into Common Core

Bradley Co. Detectives Need Help Finding Church Thieves

Christan Taylor - A Beacon of Friendship

Busy Intersection Under Investigation After Accident

UPDATE: Biker Community Reacts to Fatal Motorcycle Crash

Chattanooga Coca-Cola Community Expands

Obama Gives Protection to Gay, Transgender Workers

Is Russia Concealing Evidence in Ukraine Plane Shootdown?

Pedestrian Struck and Killed in Chattanooga

Sideroads: Mayfield Farm

Man Adopts a Fine Feathered Friend

Our Monday Facebook Friend of the Day

Middle East Crisis

GMC Mid-Morning Update for Monday

Conserving Water in Chattanooga

Mothers Demanding Stop To Gang-Related Violence

Legendary Actor James Garner Dies

McMinn Sheriff Warns of Scam

Disabled Sports Despite Rain

Chattanooga Woman Using Birthday To Promote Kindness

Restaurants Take Measures To Avoid Over-Serving Customers

Cleveland Crash Survivor Shares His Story

Lawyer Weighs in on Police Order to Destroy Video

McMinn County Murder Suspects in Court

House Fire Training Ends For New Recruits

Obama Protestors Hang Signs at Hamilton Place Overpass

LaFayette Culinary Center Makes Quick Work of Lunch

David's Picks for the Weekend

Kickball Craze Hits Chattanooga

TN Family Invents "Handlebar Helmet"

What We Know, And Don't Know, One Day after Crash of Malaysian Plane

Fire Department Trainees Gather for Customary 'Fiery Photo'

Early Voting Underway in Tennessee, Ending in Georgia

President's Special Address on Plane Shoot-down and Gaza Conflict

FedEx Intends to Fight Drug Shipment Allegations

Campaign Finance Complaint Filed Against Weston Wamp

'Shocking' Jail Problems in Grundy County

Growing Wildfire Empties Washington Town

M17 Shootdown - Calling for an International Investigation

Our Friday Facebook Friend of the Day

Amazing Precision - They Did Try This at Home

GMC Mid-Morning Update for Friday

Snakes Galore - No Rule Against 200 Serpents in House

Rookie Firefighters Staring Down the Beast

Memorial Services Honor The Life Of Cleveland Judge Bill Moss

Settlement Reached for Past Due Liquor Taxes in Hamilton County

Israel & Gaza "Cheat Sheet:" How the Conflict Got to This Point

3 Arrested in McMinn County Murder

2 Women from Athens, Temporarily 'Lost at Sea'

U.S. Officials Believe Malaysian Flight Was Shot Down

Former NTSB Chairman Jim Hall's Take on Malaysian Plane Crash in Ukraine

Israel Launches Ground Offensive into Gaza Strip

Neighbors React to Catoosa County Home Invasion

Chattanooga Fire Department Cadets to Burn Down House Friday

Camp Teaches 7-Year-Olds To Code

VW Plans Welcome Center in Downtown Chattanooga

Dog Hailed as Hero for Alerting Deaf Boy to Fire

2nd Person Dies Following Tuesday's Wreck on Hwy 153

Bank Robbers, Hostage Killed in Hail of Gunfire, Caught on Tape

Couple Calls 911 on Crazed Cat

Georgia’s Unemployment Rate Rises, Still Down from 2013

GMC Mid-Morning Update for Thursday

Advertise with us!

Newsmax Headlines

Sponsored content

Business News

IMF cuts forecast for US economic growth in 2014

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The International Monetary Fund has shaved its forecast for U.S. economic growth this year, mostly because of a sharp contraction in the first quarter.

Consumer Info

   WEST PALM BEACH, FL -- (Marketwired) -- 03/21/14 --
 Companies that pride themselves on being eco-friendly may have conflicted
 ideas between marketing with ad specialties and maintaining their green
 reputation. ...

Entertainment News

CLEANING UP WITH THE KARDASHIANS?

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Call it a case of fighting water pollution with pop culture.

Get This

MARIJUANA AT A MUSEUM

SEATTLE (AP) -- It's one joint that won't go up in smoke.

Science/Tech News

IN THE NEWS: STUB-HUB GETS HIT BY HACKERS

NEW YORK (AP) -- StubHub is the latest online seller to be hit by a security breach.


 

Tonight on WTVC NewsChannel 9

7:00 Wheel of Fortune

7:30 Jeopardy

8:00 The Middle

8:30 The Goldbergs 

9:00 Modern Family

9:30 The Middle 

10:00 Motive

11:00 NewsChannel 9

11:35 Jimmy Kimmel Live

Complete Schedule »


Road Trippin
No Text Zone
Pay It Forward
Storm Track 9 Radar
Storm Track 9 Weather App