National News

Family waits for prosecutors one year after child's death

Posted July 20

— The father and stepmother of a 12-year-old boy, who died while hiking during a blazing hot summer day one year ago, say they are still waiting for some kind of accountability.

"I really don't know. I would like to know what the hesitation is by the county charging attorney. I don't understand," said Brian Flom, whose son, Cody, died on a north Phoenix hiking trail on July 22, 2016.

Cody was hiking with his mother's boyfriend at the time. The temperature was estimated to be 110 degrees on the trail.

"That's the first thing that should never have happened," said Heather Flom, who was Cody's stepmother.

The Floms say they would never have agreed to allow the boyfriend to take Cody hiking that day.

"There was just a complete disregard for Cody," said Flom.

Phoenix police detectives investigated the death and forwarded the case to the Maricopa County Attorney's Office for prosecution.

In a statement emailed to CBS 5 Investigates, the county attorney's office wrote, "Prosecutors were working with law enforcement to ensure they had the information needed to review the case for charging. At this time, the case is under review and a charging decision has not been made."

Just one week ago, Scottsdale police cited a woman for animal cruelty, after her dog died on a hike in a mountain preserve.

"You know they were cited immediately, and my son. We're a year out and we don't even know if they're taking the case," said Flom.

In the meantime, the family has used the tragedy and memory of Cody to help others. They created an organization called Cody's Voice. They donated dozens of cases of bottled water to the Salvation Army, and are helping an Eagle Scout from Cody's Boy Scout troop with signs that will go up at trail heads across the Valley, warning of the dangers posed by excessive heat.

"Our natural disaster is the heat. We want to see a reduction of summertime rescues off the mountains," said Flom.

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