Belfast Telegraph

Friday 29 August 2014

Woman 'admits killing six babies'

Police at the home in Pleasant Grove, Utah, where seven babies' bodies were discovered (AP)

A Utah woman accused of killing six babies that she gave birth to over 10 years told investigators that she either strangled or suffocated the children and then put them inside boxes in her garage, authorities said.

Megan Huntsman said that between 1996 and 2006, she gave birth to at least seven babies at her home and that all but one of them were born alive, according to a probable cause statement released by police.

She said she killed them immediately after they were born, and put their bodies inside boxes, police said. The statement said each baby was wrapped in either a towel or a shirt, and placed in a plastic bag.

Huntsman is being held on six million dollar bail - one million dollars for each baby she is accused of killing.

Huntsman was arrested yesterday on six counts of murder after police found the infants' bodies. A seventh baby appears to have been stillborn, said Utah County Attorney Jeffrey Buhman.

Formal charges have not yet been filed against Huntsman and no other arrests have been made but Mr Buhman said the investigation remains open.

Investigators were trying to determine if the babies had the same or multiple fathers, he said.

Huntsman's estranged husband found the first infant's body while cleaning out the garage after recently getting out of prison. Authorities do not believe he was aware of the babies and said he is not a person of interest at this time.

Police Captain Michael Roberts said officers responded to a call from him on Saturday about a dead infant, and then they found the six other bodies.

Family and neighbours identified the estranged husband as Darren West, who has been in prison on drug-related charges.

Capt Roberts said police believe West and Huntsman were together when the babies were born.

"We don't believe he had any knowledge of the situation," Capt Roberts added.

The babies' bodies were sent to the Utah medical examiner's office for tests, including one to determine the cause of death.

Huntsman also has three daughters - one teenager and two young adults - who lived at the house.

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