How did Cincinnati teen become trapped, suffocate in van seat?

CINCINNATI — Sixteen-year-old Kyle Plush died Tuesday when a third row seat in a 2004 Honda Odyssey van crushed him.

Investigators believe Plush was reaching for a tennis racquet in the rear of the van.

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"The young man was trapped in the third row bench seat, and it is called positional asphyxiation," said Hamilton County Prosecutor Joseph Deters said. "We are actively trying to identify experts to assist us in this investigation."

The third row in the van folds down to make more room in the cargo area, and when Plush leaned into the seat, he possibly caused the back seat to fall backward, pinning him upside down between the seat and the van’s hatch.

Plush suffocated, and the coroner ruled his death an accident.

There were no seat-related recalls on the 2004 version that Plush died in, a 2004 model, according to Honda. For the 2011-2017 models, there is a recall on the second row outer seats.

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According to Honda, when installing or repositioning the seat into either position, it’s possible that the rear latch may not attach properly to the correct position on the seat striker.

Deters is launching a full investigation to determine what exactly happened that led to the death, WCPO-TV reports.

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