Police investigate apparent drowning of 11-month-old boy
Editor's note: This story has been updated with additional information from police.
Police are investigating the apparent drowning of an 11-month-old boy in a swimming pool at a home in Sumpter Township Monday.
Police were called to the home in the 45000 block of Bontekoes Avenue shortly after 11 a.m. Monday and found a 17-year-old boy holding the child, Sumpter Township police Det. John Toth said. The teen and the child were near the house, several feet away from the deck of the above-ground pool, Toth said.
The officer began efforts to resuscitate the boy, Oliver J. Hunt, and he was eventually taken to Mott Children’s Hospital, where he was declared dead.
Police and Children's Protective Services are investigating the incident, Toth said, and he said he could not provide the details of what happened. He also could not comment on the status of other children in the home.
The Washtenaw County Medical Examiner's Office conducted an autopsy Monday. Dr. Jeff Jentzen, who conducted the autopsy, said the cause of death was "consistent with drowning."
Jason Fredenburg, an Ypsilanti pastor who knows the family, said the child had been napping and climbed out of his crib after the crib wall fell down. He then crawled through a small opening in a sliding glass door, Fredenburg said, and climbed onto the pool deck outside and fell into the pool.
Toth stressed that there’s no reason to believe the 17-year-old who was holding the child was responsible for his care before his death. He said he could not release any information about the investigation, including who found the child.
Toth said there were 10 people at the home when the child was found, including both parents, several half siblings and the homeowner, who is the grandmother of one of the siblings.
Fredenburg said the family told him doctors used Oliver’s heart, pancreas and liver to help other children. He said he is officiating at the funeral planned for Saturday at his church, Harvest of Victory, 2925 E. Michigan Ave., Ypsilanti. The family will receive friends in the hour before the service.
Fredenburg said he has set up a fund to help with funeral and other expenses for the family. Donations to the Oliver J. Hunt Fund can be made at any Huntington Bank.