Day Care Owner Charged in Baby’s Car Seat Strap Death


The owner of an illegal day care in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, was arrested and charged in the death of a baby girl after she left the child alone in a car seat with the chest strap around her neck for two hours, investigators said. 

Lauren Landgrebe, 48, was watching eight children at the day care she operated out of her home on the 1500 block of Rosebud Road in Upper Southampton Township back on Aug. 27. Landgrebe placed one of the children, an 11-month-old girl, in a car seat inside the home around 1 p.m. that day, investigators said.

An hour later, Landgrebe gave the baby a bottle and propped it up on a rolled hand towel because the child couldn’t hold it herself, according to police. Investigators said a photo that Landgrebe took, which she later deleted, showed the baby slumped low in the car seat with the chest strap around her neck.

The photo also showed the car seat’s leg straps, which would have prevented the baby from sliding down in the seat, were not engaged, according to investigators.

Landgrebe then left the room and spent the next two hours outside near her swimming pool while the baby was alone in the car seat, according to the criminal complaint.

Landgrebe and her husband then found the baby unresponsive in the car seat on their dining room table shortly after 4 p.m. Her husband performed CPR on the baby and called 911. The child was then rushed to Abington Hospital where she was pronounced dead at 5:15 p.m. that day. Investigators said she died from asphyxiation by strangulation.

Detectives later learned Landgrebe had been collecting Social Security Disability payments for about ten years and claiming in filings that she was unable to work, according to police. Investigators believe Landgrebe stole at least $2,000 in Social Security Disability funds.

She also never reported any income from her day care which she had operated at her home for years, investigators said.

Landgrebe is charged with involuntary manslaughter, endangering the welfare of children, operating a day care facility without a license, tampering with evidence, theft by deception and receiving stolen property.

Landgrebe was arraigned Wednesday and jailed in lieu of 10 percent of $500,000 bail. Her preliminary hearing is set for Dec. 12.

Source : Nbcnewyork