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What to do if you see a child in a locked car

Posted at 11:12 AM, May 11, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-11 12:21:52-04

INDIANAPOLIS -- In Indiana, it's illegal to break into a hot car to save an animal.

PREVIOUS | Break a window to free a dog in a hot car? Not in Indiana

But what if it's a child?

In Indiana, the laws are a little clearer when it comes to children trapped in hot cars.

According to Indiana law, you would be immune from civil liability if you break into a car to rescue a child under a few circumstances:

  • The vehicle must be locked or there is no other way to get the child than to break in
  • You must have a "good faith belief" that breaking into the vehicle is necessary and the child is in danger of being harmed if you don't
  • You have to call emergency services before you break in, if possible. If that isn't possible, you have to call immediately after
  • You can't use "more force than necessary" to break into the vehicle
  • You have to stay with the child until a law enforcement officer arrives