Former prosecutor: Police too quick to arrest dad in son's death - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

Former prosecutor: Police too quick to arrest dad in son's death

A former prosecutor said Cobb County police acted too quickly when they arrested the father of a toddler who died after being left in a hot car all day.

Justin Ross Harris, 34, is facing murder charges in the death of his 22-month-old son, Cooper.

Harris told police he forgot the child in the car while he was at work. He discovered the toddler as he drove home hours later.

"It's a little unusual to me that you arrest first and then investigate," said Bill Thomas, who is now a defense attorney. "Wrap it up, get enough to convict or to feel good about your case. From the things that have been said publicly on the prosecution side, that's not where they are."

Warrants indicate Harris and his wife, Leanna, researched how a child could die in a hot car. Some legal experts said that evidence could be incriminating. 

Police have not commented on the case in recent days.

"There are reasons that you would want to run the leads out, see where things go before you arrest people in a situation where there's no real danger of the defendant in this case leaving the jurisdiction," Thomas said.

Thomas said all the discussion about the case could taint the prosecution's case against Harris.

Harris remains at the Cobb County jail. He is due in court for a bond hearing Thursday afternoon.

Copyright 2014 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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