Justin Ross Harris will be tried for malice murder as well as seven other felonies, charges that collectively carry a possible death sentence.
Cobb County District Attorney Vic Reynolds said his office will decide in the next two to three weeks whether to seek the ultimate penalty.
But Harris’ defense attorney, H. Maddox Kilgore, said the state’s case will ultimately come to nothing. “The truth is, Cooper’s death was a horrible, gut-wrenching accident.”
A Cobb County grand jury indicted Harris this morning after prosecutors presented their evidence in the case. Harris’ 22-month-old son, Cooper, died June 18 after his father left him for seven hours in a sweltering SUV in the parking lot of the Home Depot office where he worked.
Harris told police it was a terrible accident, but they arrested him the same night, saying his story didn’t ring true. Harris is being held in a Cobb County jail without bond.
Grand jury proceedings are not public; the full nature of the evidence against Harris likely won’t be known until he goes to trial, which is likely to take several months. But police and prosecutors have said from early on that they believe Harris had tired of family life and wanted to escape its burdens.
Return for updates.