One Texas mom has just pleaded guilty to all charges after she was arrested for leaving her two toddlers locked inside a hot SUV for over 15 hours, which resulted in both of their deaths. Rather than go to trial on Monday, Amanda Kristine Hawkins simply plead guilty to two counts each of child abandonment, child endangerment, and injury to a child. Each charge carries a sentence of two to 20 years in federal prison.
This unspeakable tragedy occurred in June 2017, when Hawkins left her one and two-year-olds inside her car overnight and into the next day as she visited friends. By the time the two toddlers died, temperatures had reached up to 86 degrees in the area. The following day, she brought the two of them to a local hospital and said that they’d collapsed while smelling flowers outside. After being moved to a hospital in San Antonio, both girls died.
Investigators soon determined that the two girls were left alone intentionally. As the two girls began to cry inside the SUV, Hawkins’ friends inside the house had inquired about them. Per a report by the Dallas News, Hawkins responded by saying “they’ll cry themselves to sleep.” According to investigators, the 20-year-old mother didn’t take her toddler to get medical attention immediately upon finding them. Instead, she tried to bathe them both first.
Unfortunately, these types of situations aren’t that uncommon. One Mississippi mom was recently charged with murder after she intentionally left her 10-month-old son inside of her vehicle for “an unknown length of time.” It can take a child’s body less than 10 minutes to overheat, and since 1998 more than 750 children have died due to being locked inside a hot automobile. Unfortunately, this seems to not be common knowledge yet and each year more and more kids are paying the price.