Father accused of leaving child in car charged with negligent homicide

Matt Tickle (Source: Newport Police Department)
Matt Tickle (Source: Newport Police Department)

NEWPORT, AR (KAIT) - The father who police say accidentally left his 16-month-old daughter in a car, where she died, was formally charged Monday.

Matt Tickle, the father of Landyn Tickle, appeared before Judge Barbara Griffin in Jackson County District Court in Newport Monday afternoon and was charged with negligent homicide.

Newport police said Tickle intended to take the child to daycare Friday, Aug. 3, but mistakenly left the child strapped in a car seat while he went to work. Tickle told Newport police he did not notice the 16-month-old until he arrived home from work.

Newport Police chief Michael Scudder was at his home, just a few houses down from 2800 Doyle Street where Tickle discovered his daughter in the car.  Chief Scudder said he and the Newport community are struggling to deal with the accident.

"This is my thirtieth year on this police department, and I've not seen this type of incident ever, and it's tough. It's really tough."

Amanda Reynolds organized a candlelight vigil in Newport Sunday night, and attended the bond hearing Monday along with several others in a show of support for Matt and his fiancé Shelby.

"Matthew is devastated and needs to know that he is supported not because of the tragedy, but because we love him," she said. "He is a human being and humans make mistakes. If they didn't, they would be Jesus."

Chief Scudder said the couple moved from Texas to Newport, AR, about one year ago.  Matt had been working at Harris Hospital in Newport, and Shelby is a student.  Tickle told Newport police he offered to take Landyn to daycare so Shelby could rest.

"Never had no problems out of them. It seemed like a nice young couple to me when I'd see them," Chief Scudder said.

Judge Griffin set Tickle's bond at $2,500. He bonded out of jail Monday.

Tickle's next scheduled court appearance is September 20 at 9 a.m.

Copyright 2012 KAIT. All rights reserved.