A five year-old boy died after his mother left him alone to go and find help when they got lost on a snowy hiking trail, police said. Jaxon Brown was found on the Lunch Creek Trail in Ketchikan, Alaska on Saturday, three days after he and his mother Jennifer Treat, 36, went for a walk on the isolated five mile path.
A press release issued by Alaska State Troopers explained that Jaxon and his mother had visited the trail for a day out, only to become ‘disorientated and lost,’ after being unable to find the path back to their car. The release continued: ‘They spent the night together. In the morning, Treat left Jaxson to seek help on her own, as he was reportedly tired and didn’t want to hike anymore.
‘In her rush to find help, Treat reportedly tripped on a root and significantly injured her leg.’ Treat was found three miles along the trail on Friday after emergency services were contacted about a woman in distress along the hike.
Her car was found parked near the start of the trail, with a huge search that included a US Coast Guard’s helicopter subsequently launched to find her son. An autopsy will now be performed to establish how Jaxon died, with temperatures dipping below 40F (4.5C) on the night he and his mother got lost.
Alaska State Troopers spokesman Megan Peters said that Jaxon’s death ‘doesn’t appear to be suspicious in nature.’
The trail Jaxon and his mom attempted was rated ‘moderate’ in terms of difficulty, and was partially paved, with other parts comprised only of a mud track, with snow up to waist-deep in parts.
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