Two months after a Guyanese mother and her two young daughters were found dead in a car in Maryland, a US medical examiner has finally determined that the trio died from accidental heatstroke.
Allison Pluck, 32, and her daughters Shania Gill, 18 months, and Shameka Gill, 6 months were found dead on June 16 in a car that had been parked in front of a school in Hagerstown, Maryland.
The formal cause of death was hyperthermia and environmental heat exposure, an ABC7News report said. According to Bruce Goldfarb, spokesman for the Maryland Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, autopsy reports will not be complete for at least a month.
“Toxicology tests were negative, leaving investigators with no explanation for why an apparently healthy woman would sit with her small children in a hot car for hours until they died,” the report went on to say.
It continued: “‘It gives us more questions than answers as to why,’” said Hagerstown Police Capt. Paul Kifer. “It’s very possible she was having a mental breakdown and didn’t realize what she was doing would cause her death.”
According to reports, the bodies were found on the last day for teachers before summer break by an employee of the school. The teacher had spotted the unfamiliar car, its windows completely wound up, in the late afternoon on a day when temperatures peaked to nearly 90 degrees.
Neither the woman nor her children had known connections to the school which is around three miles from their rented home in the East End. The woman, who had been an employee at Walmart at the time of her death, moved to the United States sometime in 2006.