CALDWELL -- A Marsing man who mistakenly left his girlfriend's infant daughter inside a hot car for hours was sentenced Monday.
Haven Hackworth, 25, was sentenced to 3 1/2 years in prison, but Judge George Southworth elected to suspend the sentence. In its place, Hackworth will spend nine months in jail and three years on felony probation. He was also ordered to pay a $5,000 civil penalty and $1,889 in restitution.
Hackworth pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter in the May 20, 2017, death of 5-month-old Kyrae Vineyard. The baby's mother, Elisa Johnson, had left her daughter in Hackworth's care while she worked.
Police say the defendant took the baby along as he ran errands, but ultimately forgot she was inside the car during a trip to a Caldwell car dealership. She died of hyperthermia after being left in the back seat for several hours.
Officials said that at one point Hackworth went back to the car to get his vape pen and still didn't remember that the baby was in the car. The baby's mother also sent him several texts during the day.
Hackworth remembered that he left the baby in the car after he left the dealership in a new vehicle, panicked, and called the salesman to check on Kyrae. She was dead upon arrival at a hospital, and her core temperature was more than 106 degrees.
“Nothing I do can bring her back," Judge Southworth said during Monday's sentencing. "Only hope of what I do is to reinforce to others with young children out there that they have a real obligation to care for and love those children and ensure their safety. Mr. Hackworth violated that obligation and it had tragic consequences.”
“This was a difficult case for everyone involved, but I’m hopeful it can serve as a reminder to parents everywhere about the dangers of leaving young children in cars, especially as we approach the summer months where temperatures can reach well over 100 degrees,” said Canyon County Prosecutor Bryan Taylor.