Two young children’s death is ruled as homicides after police claim their mother left them in the car for hours so she could punish them while she took a nap.
Cynthia Marie Randolph was arrested after her two-year-old daughter Juliet and 16-month-old son Cavanaugh were found dead in Weatherford, Texas, on May 26.
Randolph, 25, was charged with two counts of first-degree injury to a child causing serious injury on June 23.
It was revealed Sunday that a medical examiner ruled the young children’s deaths as homicides, dying of heatstroke while they were inside the hot car on the 96F day.
Police said Randolph was trying to teach Juliet a lesson for not coming out of the car when asked. The mother apparently went back inside to smoke pot and take a nap.
Randolph put the children inside the car and then went inside the house and smoked marijuana before taking a nap for two to three hours, thinking the children would leave the car on their own when they were ready, according to police.
When the mother found the children in distress inside the car, she broke the window of the car to make the incident look like an accident, police said.
An arrest document says Randolph later said her daughter refused to get out of the car so she locked both toddlers inside to teach them a lesson, thinking they’d exit on their own.
Randolph’s story changed several times, investigators said. Initially, she told police that she was doing chores in the house when the children ‘took off’.
In that version, she said she searched the property for some time before finding the children locked inside a four-door car, which they’d apparently entered themselves and locked from the inside.
Temperatures reached 96 degrees Fahrenheit that day.
After several interviews with police, investigators determined that Randolph actually intentionally left the children in the car to teach young Juliet a lesson.
Parker County records show Randolph remains jailed.
Investigators didn’t immediately return a message Sunday on possible upgraded charges.