After being arrested for a deadly hot car death, defense attorneys for foster parent Seth Jackson said they believe the act was unintentional.
Last week, Jackson was arrested after a 10-month-old girl he was fostering died after being left in a hot car.
Les Hulnick and John Stang, Wichita defense attorneys, will be representing Jackson if or when any formal charges are filed. Stang tells Eyewitness News he's only had a short time to review the case and talk with Jackson, however, he said he believes without a doubt the incident was unintentional. It was obvious, Stang said, Jackson cared deeply for the child and was extremely upset about what happened.
Eyewitness News also spoke with Butler County Attorney Darrin Devinney, who's not connected with the case, about what kind of charges can come down following an incident like this one. He said they could range anywhere from negligence, to manslaughter.
"You can have involuntary manslaughter, you could have voluntary manslaughter," Devinney said. "There's actually a wide range of crimes that may or may not be applicable. I can tell you that each one of those is going to be completely dependent on the facts of that case."
Devinney also explained before any charges are filed, prosecutors will have to thoroughly study all police reports on the case, review medical histories of everyone involved, and study the past relationship between the victim and the suspect to determine if the act was intentional or not.
"Certainly patterns of abuse, that's going to be the difference between intentional conduct and reckless conduct, or neglectful conduct sometimes," added Devinney. "If we have reason to believe the defendant was left in there purposefully, that certainly creates a different situation than one where it was just inadvertent."
But even if it's unintentional, Devinney said, it may still be punishable.
"What I'd say is that the State of Kansas does have a strong interest in protecting children and does impose a vast legal duty upon parents," he said. "And that is to say it's not good enough to say, 'oh it skipped my mind.'"
Depending on any possible charges, sentences could range anywhere from probation, to prison time.
Police are expected to present the case to the district attorney's office on Tuesday, July 29.