[Nameplate] Mostly Cloudy ~ 61°F  
High: 63°F ~ Low: 41°F
Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Police: Child slipped out of water wings

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

A week has passed since a Greencastle toddler drowned in her grandmother's backyard swimming pool, and now more details about the death are known.

Greencastle Police Detective Randy Seipel told the BannerGraphic that based on his investigation, 2-year-old Serinity L. Hammer entered the 3 1/2-foot-deep swimming pool undetected and somehow slipped out of the inflatable water wings she was wearing on her arms, causing her to go under the water.

Beverly Lawler, the toddler's grandmother, told police that prior to the drowning, she left the girl standing on the patio behind the house and went inside to get a diaper.

While she was gone -- a period of a few minutes -- the little girl made her way back to the swimming pool and climbed in, Seipel said. He quoted the grandmother as telling him that "it seemed like a couple of minutes."

When Lawler came back outside, she found her granddaughter floating in the pool. The girl was unconscious and had stopped breathing.

Paramedics performed cardiopulmonary resuscitation on Hammer before she was flown to an Indianapolis hospital, but she died the following day.

Seipel said Monday that he is close to wrapping up his investigation into the death and still believes it is a case of accidental drowning. He said he plans to turn his report over to the prosecutor's office for a routine review.

Prosecutor Tim Bookwalter said Tuesday that he had not received the report from Seipel but plans to review it.

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: