Prosecutor Compares 'Hot Car Dad' to Will Ferrell's 'Anchorman' Character Ron Burgundy
The first officer to respond described Justin Harris' reaction to his child's death as "phony."
In a bizarre moment during the murder trial of a Georgia dad accused of leaving his child to die in a hot car, a prosecutor and a witness compared the man to Will Ferrell’s Anchorman character, Ron Burgundy.
Justin Harris is accused of intentionally leaving his 22-month-old son, Cooper Harris, in the back of the scorching vehicle before he began a shift at his job in 2014.
Cobb County Deputy District Attorney Chuck Boring said in his 90-minute long opening statement that Harris showed no remorse after realizing what he had done.
"He doesn't try to call 911 he tries to call his wife and trying to call day care,” Boring said. “He doesn't call 911, instead separates himself from his child. No tears, as will be described, sort of like Will Ferrell screaming, 'oh my gosh, what have I done? What have I done?' And then he is calm."
One of the first police officers on the scene also said Harris’ reaction to the horrific death of his 2-year-old son seemed phony.
Cobb County Police Officer Jacquelyn Piper arrived at the Akers Mill Square shopping center parking lot on June 18, 2014 to find the toddler on the ground, his father pacing back and forth and talking on his cellphone.
“I found it kind of unusual,” Piper said.
Piper compared Harris’ behavior to Ferrell’s depiction of Ron Burgundy in ‘Anchorman,’ referencing a scene where he calls a friend from inside a phone booth and yells that he is in a “glass case of emotion.”
The officer testified that when he was taken in for questioning, Harris complained about the squad car and actually went on to flirt with her.
“It actually made me feel very uncomfortable,” she said.
Prosecutors claim that on the day his son died, Harris posted a message on the anonymous confession site Whisper that read: "I hate being married with kids. The novelty has worn off and I have nothing to show for it."
He was also accused of living a double life, sexting with dozens of women and hiring a prostitute while married to Cooper’s mother, Leanna. The two are now divorced, but Leanna said she still believes he did not kill their child intentionally.
Harris wept in court as his defense attorney played a clip from his police interrogation. He claims the child's death was a tragic accident.
If convicted, Harris faces life in prison.
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