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Mother charged with killing infants lost track of babies she stashed, police say

Homicide
Utah mom accused of killing six infants lost track of how many she'd stashed in her garage, documents show
Via @latimes: Utah mom charged with killing babies stored them in garage, police say

The Utah mother accused of stashing her seven dead babies in a garage had lost track of how many bodies she had left there and told police upon her arrest that she had hidden at least eight or nine bodies, according to newly available court documents.

Megan Huntsman, 39, was charged this week with strangling or suffocating six of the babies police eventually found. The seventh was still-born, prosecutors said. The first of the babies may have been born in 1996.

Court documents released Friday revealed that the babies had been stored as if they were unwanted pottery.

The bodies were wrapped in towels or sweaters and packed with plastic wrap in storage boxes, some of which had been sealed shut with electrical tape. The boxes rested against a garage wall.

Police also confiscated parts of a stained mattress, bloody leather gloves, three diapers and baby clothes and booties found in the closet of the master bedroom.

The first body was discovered April 12 by Huntsman’s estranged husband, Darren West. He had stopped by the Pleasant Grove house to clean out the garage. Inside one small, white box lay a baby, surrounded by plastic wrap.

West immediately called Huntsman. She said the child was theirs, and she later told police that the infant had been stored for nearly nine years, according to court documents.

Huntsman told West that she hid the stillborn baby because she was scared and didn’t know what do, according to the newly released court filing. Prosecutors haven’t publicly stated any motive. 

West had been away in federal prison on a methamphetamine-related conviction from 2006 through this year. Huntsman moved out of the house in 2011, but the couple’s three teenage-and-older children and West’s sister continued to live there.

It remains unclear how Huntsman would have been able to have so many children without notice or whether others were aware of the boxes in the garage.

The West family state last month that family members were in a “state of shock and confusion.”

Huntsman, who is scheduled to return to court May 19, is being held in jail in lieu of $6-million bail. Authorities are still testing DNA secured from the remains to confirm the infants' genders, ages and dates of birth.

Recently, Huntsman had been staying in a trailer with a boyfriend. She had made a couple of trips to the old house to pick up a mattress, dresser and bags of items. At the trailer, police seized marijuana, bongs, pipes and a diary.

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