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New information on the death of twin toddlers
Toddler death scene

FUNERAL ARRANGEMENTS ANNOUNCED: A viewing for Payton and Raelynn Keyes will be held Saturday, Oct. 5, from 6-8 p.m. at Toombs County Funeral Home. Funeral services will be held Sunday, Oct. 6, at 3 p.m. at Toombs County Funeral Home, 211 West Liberty Ave., Lyons, Ga. 30436.

The preliminary autopsy results of Payton and Raelynn Keyes  have been released.  According to Liberty County Coroner, Reginald Pierce based on an autopsy conducted at the GBI Crime Lab In Pooler Monday, the cause of death was ruled Heat Stroke.   The deaths have also been ruled accidental. Pierce said finale results of the GBI report will be released after an investigation and final autopsy report Is completed.

There have been new developments in the story of two toddlers found dead inside a car in the Griffin Park subdivision in Hinesville this past Sunday.

According to a second press release issued by City of Hinesville PR Manager Whitney Morris-Reed on Oct. 1, the Hinesville Police Department is working to establish the timeline of events on Sunday, September 29 that led to the 911 call regarding two children found unresponsive inside a vehicle.

Preliminary autopsy results established the cause of death as heat stroke and likely accidental.

According to Hinesville Police Department Detective, Capt. Tracey Howard, twin siblings, Raelynn and Payton Keyes, 3, were in private foster care contracted through the state of Georgia along with their two brothers.

Howard said the children were visiting the home of the foster parent’s fiancé. The two young girls were last seen Saturday evening when they were placed in bed for the night.

Sunday, the girls’ brothers, ages 6 and 8, told the foster parent that the girls were not in their room and could not be found.

The foster parent, who has yet to be identified, had told authorities she had seen the girls playing that morning.

When the search began earlier that morning, the foster parent could not locate the children inside the home. The search was expanded to the backyard and the surrounding area in the neighborhood. The foster parent returned to the home to resume the search and recheck the backyard. It was during this second search that the children were found unresponsive inside a vehicle parked in the home’s backyard.

The foster parent called 9-1-1.

According to an earlier release from the City of Hinesville, the 9-1-1- call came in at 1:42 p.m. Sunday Sept. 29. Officers were immediately dispatched to the home in the 200 block of Augusta Way.

Morris-Reed said that once first responders determined that the children were deceased, HPD immediately began a death investigation. A perimeter was established and all individuals were removed from the home. 

A search warrant for the home was obtained and GBI was contacted to assist with the investigation. A crime scene unit processed the scene with the assistance from GBI and the bodies of the children were removed from the scene and taken to the crime lab. 

Preliminary autopsy results established cause of death as heat stroke and have been deemed accidental. The vehicle in which the girls were found, was impounded. The identity of the children’s biological parents has not been released.

HPD continues to work with the GBI on the case.

If you have any information regarding this case, please contact the Hinesville Police Department Detectives Unit at 912.368.8215. Please direct questions to Whitney Morris-Reed, Public Relations Manager, 912.408.3569 or 

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