Texas woman convicted of leaving toddlers in hot auto where they died

Texas mom gets 20 years for leaving kids to die in hot car as a ‘lesson

The 25-year-old was found guilty by jurors of two counts of injury to a child after leaving her two-year-old daughter Juliet Ramirez and her 16-month-old son Cavanaugh Ramirez in the vehicle.

The mother originally told investigators that 2-year-old daughter Juliet Ramirez and son 16-month-old Cavanaugh Ramirez had disappeared from an enclosed sunroom and later locked themselves in her vehicle on May 26, 2017. She was sentenced to 20 years in prison on each count, with the terms to run concurrently.

One of the kids refused to get out of the auto, so she shut the door to teach her daughter "a lesson", according to an arrest warrant affidavit, thinking they could get themselves out of the vehicle. Authorities said medics pronounced the children dead at the scene. Temperatures soared to 96 degrees that day, which at the time was the hottest day of the year, and could have reached 140 degrees inside the vehicle, according to noheatstroke.org. She then went into the house and proceeded to smoke weed and nap for more than two hours.

Court records reveal that both charges Randolph was convicted of carry a maximum of 20 years in prison.

Randolph originally told investigators that she was folding laundry in the home and realized the children "took off". One of the prosecutors in this case, Kathleen Catania, commented: "We thought that the evidence supported a finding that she acted knowingly, which means that she knew that her actions were reasonably certain to cause the result, which, in this case, was her children's deaths".

While jurors found her guilty, they did not find she had criminal intent nor did she shut the auto doors on the children, said Parker County Assistant District Attorney Jeff Swain.

Randolph told police she went to check on her children after about a half-hour - but they were "gone". Randolph "created several variations of the events" of May 26, police said - and was arrested less than a month after the tragedy. According to testimony, Randolph watched "Keeping Up With the Kardashians" on television before taking her nap. They died within 30 minutes of being left in the auto and first responders' contributed the cause of death to their body temperatures.

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