Toddler brain dead after family says caregiver improperly fastened him in car seat

INDIANAPOLIS, Indiana – A 17-month-old boy is on life support, and his family is deciding whether they should continue life-saving efforts. This, after they say he stopped breathing while in the care of a state-approved caregiver.

According to WXIN, doctors have declared Major Maxie brain dead after his family members say he was found not breathing in a car seat.

Before that, the boy had already been placed in two foster homes, but he was recently returned to his mother and enjoyed supervised visitations with his father.

According to the family, a counselor from Lifeline Youth and Family Services was responsible for taking the boy to and from those visits. On Wednesday, May 31st, the counselor picked the boy up at his mother’s home in Noblesville for a meeting with his dad, but something went terribly wrong. When the caregiver got out of her vehicle, she told the boy's father that she had a surprise for him, so he walked around to the driver's side door and reached in to get the boy out, and he was slumped over, according to Jackie Smith, the boy's grandmother.

The father said his son was not breathing. The father performed CPR until his son was rushed to Riley Hospital for Children.

“The doctor stated he was without oxygen to the brain for 30 minutes,” said Smith.

The family said the child was not properly fastened in his car seat by the caregiver.

WXIN spoke with Lifeline Youth and Family Services. Officials said an investigation has been launched, and they're cooperating with police. The company’s president said he’s heartbroken over this, and while their procedures and policies are solid, he wouldn’t say whether the caregiver followed the rules.

The woman has been suspended with pay, as homicide detectives have opened up an investigation.

Family members said the boy has not shown any signs of brain activity and they're hoping his organs can be donated.