Crews recover body of 17-month-old girl in Ohio River - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Crews recover body of 17-month-old girl in Ohio River

The coroner says the girl's body was found inside a pickup truck that was submerged in the Ohio River. The coroner says the girl's body was found inside a pickup truck that was submerged in the Ohio River.
Illinois State Police say the baby and mother were in the truck when it rolled into the Ohio River. Illinois State Police say the baby and mother were in the truck when it rolled into the Ohio River.
The vehicle was pulled to shore at 6:25 a.m. with the baby's body inside. The vehicle was pulled to shore at 6:25 a.m. with the baby's body inside.

OLD SHAWNEETOWN (KFVS/WFIE) - Gallatin County Coroner Tony Cox says crews recovered the body of a little girl early Thursday morning in the Ohio River near Old Shawneetown.

Charisma Jordan Michelle McGuire, 17 months, drowned, according to Illinois State Police.

Cox says the girl's body was found inside a Ford Ranger pickup truck that was submerged in the Ohio River. This was near the Bunge Corporation grain elevator.

Charisma and her mother, Kaylan Perry were sitting in the truck while Jesse Oldham was down at the river edge netting for Shad to they could fish.

The mother told police the toddler kicked the gear shift and the vehicle rolled down the bank. The single cab truck was manual transmission and the parking brake did not work.

The mother tried to free little Charisma from her car seat when it rolled into the river, according to Illinois State Police.

A family member tells Heartland News that the girl's father also tried to step in front of the truck to keep it from rolling into the river.

But, he was unable to do so and was injured as the truck rolled over top of him and into the water.

The vehicle was submerged and Kaylan Perry was able to escape.

The two and others continued to dive for the truck after it sank to no avail.

The area where the truck entered the water is a very deep part of the river. It's where the barges are loaded at the Bunge Company. The channel was between 40 and 60 feet deep.

Police say the depth and the current in the river where the truck went under slowed their ability to remove the vehicle from the water.

ISP do not suspect foul play. An autopsy revealed the toddler drowned. The incident has been deemed an accident.

The Saline County Central Dispatch received a 911 call around 8:15 p.m. Wednesday of a vehicle with a child inside that ran off into the Ohio River in Old Shawneetown.

Rescue crews searched the river all night.

The Shawneetown Fire Department was on scene within three minutes of the call. The Gallatin County Sheriff's Office and Gallatin County EMS, Shawneetown and Ridgway Police Departments also responded to the scene.

Dive teams from Marrs Township and Perry Township in Posey and Vanderburgh County Indiana began dive operations around 9:45 p.m. Wednesday.

Eight boats joined in the search and recovery operation. The truck was found about 50 feet below the surface of the water by using side scan sonar. The current was very strong at that depth, which hampered the recovery, according to the Gallatin County EMA.

"I was on scene in three minutes," said Gallatin Co. EMA Director Steve Galt. "Debris was still floating. The Shawneetown Police Chief was there, he was in the water. There was a couple of local people in the water."

Dive teams came in from Marrs and Perry townships in Indiana to help where crews located the pickup, 50 feet below the surface, but the river was working against them.

"The current, down to 30 feet, was not too bad, the way I understand it," Galt said. "But as soon as they got below 30 feet, they couldn't even stay in one place. It just kept pushing them away."

They went to Plan B.

"And used a grappling hook and kept running over it and grabbing it and pulling it a little closer to shore," said Galt.

Almost 12 hours later, at 6:25 in the morning, crews managed to get the vehicle on shore.

"For the first hour, we were still in the rescue mode, you know, hoping that some way or another they got out and we could find them, you know, and after about an hour we switched to recovery mode."

The incident is being investigated by the Gallatin County Sheriff's Office, Shawneetown Police Department, Gallatin County Coroner's Office and the Illinois State Police.

Other agencies assisting with the search and recovery: Ridgway Fire Department, Old Shawneetown Fire Department, Gallatin County EMA, Med-Force EMS, Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Bunge Corporation, Vernell's Towing of Marion, IL and C&T Towing of Shawneetown.

Copyright 2012 KFVS & WFIE. All rights reserved.

  • Heartland NewsMore>>

  • Shawnee Community College contributes to Cairo revitalization effort

    Shawnee Community College contributes to Cairo revitalization effort

    Wednesday, August 16 2017 3:27 PM EDT2017-08-16 19:27:27 GMT
    (Source: KFVS)(Source: KFVS)

    Shawnee Community College has made the decision to move its Cairo Extension Center to Cairo High School in hopes of contributing to the revitalization of Cairo, Illinois.

    Shawnee Community College has made the decision to move its Cairo Extension Center to Cairo High School in hopes of contributing to the revitalization of Cairo, Illinois.

  • Heartland road projects for 8/16

    Heartland road projects for 8/16

    Sunday, May 11 2014 4:08 PM EDT2014-05-11 20:08:01 GMT
    Wednesday, August 16 2017 2:53 PM EDT2017-08-16 18:53:27 GMT

    Here is a list of some road projects from around the Heartland.

    Here is a list of some road projects from around the Heartland.

  • Cape Girardeau road closure alert

    Cape Girardeau road closure alert

    Wednesday, August 16 2017 2:35 PM EDT2017-08-16 18:35:53 GMT
    The City of Cape Girardeau Storm Water crew has closed the 100 block of North Water Street between Broadway and Themis for an emergency storm line repair. Traffic will not be allowed on this portion of North Water Street while work is being done. Work is expected to be done by Thursday, August 17, at 5 p.m. Drivers are asked to use caution near the work zone and seek alternate routes. For more information, please contact Cape Girardeau Public Works at 573-339-6351. Download the K...
    The City of Cape Girardeau Storm Water crew has closed the 100 block of North Water Street between Broadway and Themis for an emergency storm line repair. Traffic will not be allowed on this portion of North Water Street while work is being done. Work is expected to be done by Thursday, August 17, at 5 p.m. Drivers are asked to use caution near the work zone and seek alternate routes. For more information, please contact Cape Girardeau Public Works at 573-339-6351. Download the K...
Powered by Frankly