Missouri woman accused of leaving daughters in hot car charged with murder

A Missouri woman has been indicted on murder charges after authorities said she fell asleep in a hot car with her two daughters, who later died.

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Jenna Boedecker, 30, was indicted Tuesday on charges that her 2-year-old daughter, Ireland Ribando, and newborn daughter, Goodknight Ribando, died after being left in the vehicle for hours on July 4, 2018, the Kansas City Star reported.

Boedecker faces two counts of murder, as well as other charges including first-degree child endangerment and domestic assault.

Boedecker told police she and her daughters slept in her Jeep Patriot after she lost the key to her home, the newspaper reported. When she woke up the next morning, Boedecker told police her daughters were unresponsive and not breathing.

Boedecker said she then ran to a neighbor’s house for help. The neighbor called 911 while Boedecker tried to cool the girls with water and wet rags, the newspaper reported. When paramedics responded, they pronounced the girls dead.

Around 9:30 a.m. on July 4, a social worker from the Missouri Children’s Division visited the family’s home in response to a hotline call from the previous night about the children’s welfare. The social worker told police he walked by the vehicle, but didn’t notice the children inside. He told police he knocked on the door three times, but left when no one answered.

Boedecker and her husband, identified in court records as Joseph Ribando, had been arguing the night of July 3. Ribando told police that Boedecker threw a brick at his truck and rammed it with her Jeep.

Boedecker later told police that she and her children were locked out of the house when her husband left after the argument. Ribando told police he thought the children were inside the home when he left.

Before Tuesday’s murder indictment, Boedecker was charged with domestic assault, armed criminal action and property damage in relation to the alleged domestic incident from July 3. The indictment supersedes the previous charges.