SUWANNEE COUNTY - Three children died after being found unresponsive in a freezer in Florida, Action News Jax reports.
Police said first responders went to the home in Suwannee County Sunday night after they received a 911 call about three children found not breathing. Responders performed CPR, but the children later died at the hospital.
The sheriff said the children, ages 1, 4 and 6 years old, were playing outside when a woman who was watching them went inside to use the bathroom.
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During that time, for unknown reasons, the children climbed inside of a chest freezer, according to the Sheriff's Office. The freezer was new to the property and was not yet plugged in or brought inside, the Sheriff's Office said.
The Sheriff's Office said, when the woman went back outside and couldn't find the children, she woke up another woman at the home. Together they searched the property and the surrounding areas and eventually the chest freezer.
According to Suwanee County Sheriff Sam St. John, the mother and the grandmother spent about twenty to 30 minutes searching for the children.
According to the Sheriff's Office, the women said all three children were inside the freezer, not breathing, and that's when they began resuscitative efforts and called 911.
St. John said that the children could have been in the freezer for up to 45 minutes during the search.
The Sheriff's Office said the freezer had an after-market hasp on the lid to secure a padlock.
The Sheriff's Office said, "It is believed at this time, that when the children entered the freezer, and the lid closed, the hasp fell shut, trapping the children inside. There was no padlock on the freezer.
The Sheriff's Office said the Florida Department of Children and Families has been notified and the investigation is still ongoing.
The Sheriff's Office said foul play is not suspected at this time.
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