Local mom speaks out about toddler's freak accident death

Greenfield Police said 3-year-old Payton Goff died after she tried to climb into a car through a partially open car window

Greenfield, Ind.

A local mother who found her toddler hanging from a partially open car window is warning other parents to learn from her tragedy.

Greenfield police said 3-year-old Payton Goff died after she tried to climb into a car through a partially open window.

"Imagine the worst feeling times a thousand," said Payton's mother, who did not want her identity revealed. "I had no idea that (the car window) could be dangerous or a threat to my children."

She told police she had been in the garage with her daughter and eight-year-old son, Sunday, when she went inside her home with her son for a few minutes while Payton played. In that time, police believe, Goff used a tricycle to prop herself up to the driver's side door of a car and tried to climb in. They believe, she lost her footing and became caught in the partially open window. Goff's mother found her hanging from the car.

"That's where they found her. With her head stuck in the window and then dangling on the outside of the car," said Major Derek Towle.

Police arrived on scene to find Payton unresponsive while her mother performed CPR on her. Major Towle called it an "unfortunate incident" that will likely not result in any charges.

However, he does hope other parents will take extra caution this summer when leaving their car windows cracked.

"Make sure if we're going to leave our windows cracked to keep it to a point that we know that kids can't get themselves in," said Towle.

Payton's mother wanted to send the same message, hoping it would prevent another tragedy.

"Grab your kids and don't take any moment for granted, because the moments that you don't think matter, they do matter," she said as she teared up. "I would just do anything to have her back."

The family is now working to give Goff a proper funeral, but is struggling with the sudden expense. If you'd like to help, donations can be made to the Payton Goff Memorial Fund at any Chase Bank branch.

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