Toddler found in car with dead father outside Plainwell Meijer

The Plainwell Meijer where Levi Ryan Newcomb's vehicle was found on March 6, 2017.


GUN PLAIN TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — The Allegan County sheriff says a deputy found a toddler in the same vehicle where the child’s father was found dead.

Detectives are calling the death of 29-year-old Levi Ryan Newcomb of Kalamazoo suspicious, according to a tweet from Allegan County Sheriff Frank Baker.

However, a news release posted on the agency’s Facebook page indicates Newcomb had a history of drug abuse, including meth use, and health issues that may have played a role in his death. In 2009, 24 Hour News 8 reported that Newcomb was badly burned after an explosion police believe was caused by a meth lab.

“We’re not sure at this point if this is an overdose or if the drugs contributed to the person’s health concerns, caused the death. We’re just trying to figure out exactly what brought this individual here to this parking lot and what caused this person’s death,” Baker told 24 Hour News 8.

The investigation began shortly before 1 a.m. Monday at a gas station, where another driver approached a deputy. The driver said it appeared a man was passed out in a car with a small child in the back seat just down the street, according to the Allegan County Sheriff’s Office.

Levi Ryan Newcomb
A 2013 mug shot of Levi Ryan Newcomb. (Michigan Department of Corrections)

Baker said the deputy found Newcomb outside the Meijer in Plainwell. He was not breathing when the deputy arrived and couldn’t be revived by first responders.

The 2-year-old child was unharmed.

Baker said detectives determined a second person was in the vehicle when Newcomb and his child arrived at Meijer. Authorities found the second person inside the business.

Detectives are awaiting autopsy and toxicology test results to help determine what killed Newcomb.