Four employees of Ascent Daycare in West Memphis, Arkansas, have been charged with manslaughter in the death of a 5-year-old who was left for more than eight hours inside a van.
Christopher Gardner, Jr., died Monday.
The temperature inside the van when Christopher was found was 141 degrees.
Police said it appears little Christopher had tried to kick off and pull off clothing inside the van to cool off.
One of his shoes was found outside of the van, even though the doors of the van were closed.
The West Memphis Police Department charged Felicia Ann Phillips, Pamela Robinson, Wanda Taylor and Kendra Washington.
Phillips was the driver of the van the day Christopher died.
Robinson was the adult van rider. Every day, an adult rode in the van to supervise the children.
Taylor is responsible for checking to make sure children were taken off the van and checked into the day care.
Christopher was marked as signed into the day care that day, even though he never made it off the van.
Washington normally acts as the transportation supervisor for Ascent, but was filling in for someone else that day and was doing a final sweep of the van and ensuring no one was left.
Washington admitted she never went back to do that final safety check, WMPD said.
Washington turned herself into West Memphis police.
None of the other employees are in custody yet.
Police said, in talking with employees, it appears certain safety procedures that the daycare was supposed to follow were being ignored by workers.
"This was completely preventable," police said. "If anyone on this list had done their job..."
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