Three young children trapped themselves inside an unplugged freezer in Live Oak and died Sunday night when they couldn’t escape, according to the Suwannee County Sheriff’s Office.
Deputies responded to a call around 6 p.m. from the woman who found them – one of the kids’ mothers. All three children, ages 1, 4 and 6, were unresponsive, said Suwannee County Sheriff Sam St. John.
St. John said the mother and her four-year-old child live in the home with the other two kids, a brother and sister, and their grandmother. The two women are not related.
The mother told authorities that she was playing on the trampoline with the kids outside when she had to use the restroom inside. She said she left for no more than 20 minutes. When she returned, the kids were gone.
She looked around the property, then woke up the grandmother to help her search for them, she told deputies. The two found all three unresponsive in the freezer. The children were taken to the hospital but were unable to be revived, St. John said.
The sheriff’s office said foul play isn’t suspected. After the sheriff’s office re-interviews the women, the case will be forwarded for review to prosecutors.
“This is the first time anything like this has occurred, here in our county anyway,” St. John said.
Associated Press contributed to this report.