Man and dog die in car because doors wouldn't unlock

Pair succumbed to heat exhaustion

Updated: 
Elderly Man, Dog Die Because Car Doors Wouldn't Unlock

A man and in Texas his dog died after they became trapped inside the man's car because the doors wouldn't unlock.

James Rogers, 72, of Port Arthur was having a morning coffee at a local Waffle House he regularly frequented when he stepped outside to check on his Shih Tzu inside his 2007 Chevrolet Corvette.

The Port Arthur Police Department said that Rogers arrived at the Waffle House around 8am and checked on the dog around 11.55am.

Police believe a battery cable came loose, disabling the car's electric locks and other systems and leaving Rogers unable to exit the vehicle.

Authorities believe Rogers struggled to escape and he and the dog eventually succumbed to heat exhaustion.

Waffle House employees reportedly called in another regular patron, who owns a local roadside assistance company, to try to free Rogers, but Rogers was already dead. Firefighters eventually broke a window to access the vehicle.

Corvette was man's 'dream car'

The owner of a used Corvette dealership in nearby Beaumont said the 2007 model does have a manual door release on the floorboard but not all owners are aware of it.

Rogers only recently acquired the Corvette, and his daughter Tricia Hernandez said it was his dream car.

A spokesman for General Motors told The Huffington Post that the company does not have any further details beyond what has been reported in the media.

He confirmed that Corvettes do have an emergency release for the locks and said it is described in the owner's manual.