Cops close case in drowning of Glenview boy
Signs posted June 16, 2012, announced the closure of Roosevelt Pool, 2239 Fir St., in Glenview. Lifeguards pullled a 4-year-old boy from the pool, who was later prounounced dead at Glenbrook Hospital. Police have finished their investigation without ch
Updated: September 7, 2012 12:02PM
GLENVIEW — Police have completed a two-month investigation into the June 15 drowning death of a 4-year-old Glenview boy in a park district pool.
The 85-page police report, filed Aug. 28, states that the case is administratively closed. No charges have been filed.
According to the report, Vicente Cardenas, of the 2300 block of Chestnut Avenue, was on a camp field trip at Roosevelt Pool, 2239 Fir St., with Glenview-based Wesley Child Care. He was with 19 children ages 4-5 and eight day care teachers when he went missing.
At about 2 p.m., a group of children were swimming when one noticed Cardenas on the pool’s bottom, face down in a fetal position with elbows touching his knees.
One boy reached down and touched Cardenas, but “he was unresponsive,” the report said.
The children began yelling for a lifeguard and attempted to lift Cardenas when they heard two whistle blows from a lifeguard.
From the time Cardenas was discovered and a lifeguard arrived took about 10 to 15 seconds. A lifeguard pulled him from the pool, where the water about 5 feet deep and paramedics performed CPR.
Cardenas was pronounced dead at 3:49 p.m. at Glenbrook Hospital in Glenview.
The Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office ruled cause of death an accidental drowning.
The report indicates a Wesley teacher last saw Cardenas at the bottom of a pool slide, but was distracted when another child asked her a question.
After looking back without seeing Cardenas, the teacher then asked others where he was and started walking toward the concession stand. The report also quotes a teacher who described Cardenas a “Dennis the Menace,” meaning he liked to wander off during activities.
Another teacher said about one minute had passed from the time he was missing to when lifeguards blew two whistles signaling the emergency. Yet, the teacher who saw Cardenas near the water slide said five minutes had elapsed.
Wesley Child Care teacher Darcy Kelly told police she and other teachers were in the pool watching the children in a shallow end that gradually became deeper. They were not assigned to watch individual children, but as a group, she said, adding the pool was “very crowded.”
Park district officials said the pool’s capacity is 1,359, as coded by Illinois Department of Public Health. On the day of the fatality there were 750 in attendance.
The Cook County Department of Public Health discovered no violations of operations at Roosevelt Pool on June 18.
Police served a grand jury subpoena to Glenview Park District, asking for internal investigations and interviews with pool workers. However, the report states that park district attorney Ed Dutton turned down the request, citing attorney-client privilege.
The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services has not completed its investigation.