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Exhausted Uber driver dad caged for 10 years after leaving baby daughter to die in sweltering car after 24-hour shift

A FIVE-MONTH-OLD baby was left to roast to death in a car after her Uber driver father finished a 24-hour shift.

Emma Grace died of hypothermia after her and her two siblings were left in a van parked outside Michael Thigpen’s trailer in Logan County, Kentucky.

The 34-year-old had been awake for 24 hours when he finished his shift for Uber in his van, the court heard.

He then took his wife to work before coming back home and falling asleep in bed, leaving his three daughters in the van.

Thigpen work up several hours later to series of “frantic texts” from his wife, Logan County Detective Charles Dauley said.

Authorities arrived T the trailer park and found three children unresponsive in the trailer.

An 18-month-old and 2-year-old were treated at a hospital for heat-related medical issues – but little Emma died of hypothermia on June 10, 2017, Dauley said.

Other reports suggested the tragedy happened in 2016.

Thigpen originally told police his 5-month-old, 18-month-old and 2-year-old had been sleeping in a room in the trailer when the air conditioner lost power.

During a second interview with police, Thigpen admitted he left his daughters in the van.

Dauley said: “He brought the children into the trailer, gave them Pedialyte through a syringe and put cold rags on them.”

Thigpen pleaded guilty to a count of second-degree manslaughter and two counts of first-degree assault.

Judge Tyler Gill sentenced him for 10 years behind bars.

During sentencing Gill said: "The nature of this offense call out for this sentence,.

"We’ve got to protect our children, you can’t live by accident.

"(Thigpen) shouldn’t have been left with these kids after being up for 24 hours.

"This was just a tragedy waiting to happen."


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