No parent is perfect. We all think things will never happen to us — until they do.

Let me tell you a story. When I was 9, back in the 1970s, my mother was director of a week-long Girl Scout summer day camp.
It was the last day of camp, and the staff, including my mother, father, two sisters and several other adults were planning to stay the night at the camp before breaking it down.
They were all exhausted and a night of peace and quiet was just what the doctor ordered. At one point, my mother needed to go into town, about two miles away, to my grandparent's house to get something. I got in the truck and went with her.
After a few minutes, my mother left, and I was stuck at my grandparents.
She didn't come back all day.
I ended up eating steak with my grandparents and sleeping on a very comfortable sleeper-sofa that night, but the next morning I awoke to my mother and dad grabbing me and hugging me and crying.
It turns out, my mother forgot I was with her.
By the evening, they started worrying about me and started searching the dense woods around this camp ground for me.
They were worried enough that they called the police department, fire department and Civil Defense.
More than three dozen people spent the entire night searching the woods for me.
The area also had swamps and they were afraid I had gotten into one of those and drowned.
Now my mother was and still is, an excellent, wonderful and loving parent. If anyone were to try to tell me that because she forgot me, she was a terrible mom, I'd tell them to kiss off, probably not in those terms.
What this tells me is EVERYONE needs to look in the mirror.
Certainly there are specific cases of children being left in hot cars where the parents intended to do their child harm, or they simply didn't care.
I can recall a case in Georgia where a father was prosecuted for intentionally leaving his child to die, or another case where parents left two children in a car and went into a bar to drink.
These people needed to be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, and they were.
To say “this can never happen to me” opens one up to the possibility of it happening to them.
The police have investigated this recent incident in Carthage; they believe it was truly an accident. They've said the investigation is almost complete and there is no evidence of intent to harm and no probable cause to look for any criminal charges.
Do people honestly think that police officers, most, if not all, of whom are parents, would intentionally ignore evidence that someone had any intent to harm this child?
I'm certainly not condoning leaving a child in a hot car, but to have empathy is to put one's self in another person's shoes.
This mother feels awful, I promise you. Now, even though her name has not been made public, people who don't know her are judging her on social media and finding her guilty of a terrible crime.
We want to tell ourselves that this would never happen to us, but I bet this mom at Walmart thought this would never happen to her.
If this could happen to my mother, a woman I love dearly and I know would have given her life to protect me and my sisters, YES, IT CAN HAPPEN TO ANYONE.
No parent is perfect. We all think things will never happen to us — until they do.