16-month-old boy seriously injured in 80-foot fall at Laurel race course

August 20, 1999|By Richard Irwin | Richard Irwin,SUN STAFF

A 16-month-old boy slipped from his mother's lap yesterday and fell about 80 feet from an open window in the press box at Laurel race course, a spokesman for the Anne Arundel County Police Department said.

Officer Thomas O'Connor said the toddler, whose name was not available, was in serious condition last night at the pediatric intensive care unit at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore.

According to O'Connor, the child was sitting in his mother's lap in the press box at Laurel Park about 3 p.m. when he fell through the open window and landed on the concrete pavement in front of the grandstand.

O'Connor said county police Officer Art Foote of Anne Arundel's Southern District, who was working as a security guard at Laurel, and another track security guard helped a track physician administer first-aid to the child.

A county fire department dispatcher said a state police MedEvac helicopter from Glenn L. Martin State Airport in Middle Rivertook the child to Hopkins.

O'Connor said the incident was being investigated by Anne Arundel County police and track officials.

Karin M. De Francis, senior vice president of the Maryland Jockey Club, which owns Laurel Race Course, said, "We are cooperating with the police in their investigation, and our thoughts, prayers and hearts are with the child's family."

Staff writer Tom Keyser contributed to this article.

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