Texas mom pleads guilty in deaths of 2 kids left intentionally inside hot car

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Photo of Amanda Kristene Hawkins from Kerr County Jail

KERRVILLE, Texas (AP) — A 20-year-old Texas mother whose two toddlers died after they were left for hours inside a hot vehicle has pleaded guilty.

The Kerrville Daily Times reports Amanda Kristene Hawkins pleaded guilty Monday in Kerrville to two counts each of child abandonment child endangerment and injury to a child in the June 2017 deaths of her two daughters.

Hawkins could receive up to 20 years in prison for each count when she’s sentenced Dec. 12.

Investigators believe Hawkins intentionally left 1-year-old Brynn Hawkins and 2-year-old Addyson Overgard-Eddy in her vehicle through the night and into the following day while she visited friends. Temperatures reached the 80s while the girls were in the car.

“She left them in the car — intentionally in the car — while her and the 16-year-old male friend were in the house,” Kerr County Sheriff W.R. “Rusty” Hierholzer told KABB. “They were in the house all night. The male friend for a little bit went to sleep in the car a little while, but then went back to the house.”

Kerrville is 65 miles (105 kilometers) northwest of San Antonio.

Hawkins and a 16-year-old male friend initially took the children to Peterson Regional Medical Center in Kerrsville, Texas, but the girls were found to be in “grave condition” and transferred to the University Hospital in San Antonio, the release said.

Brynn Hawkins, 1, and Addyson Overgard-Eddy, 2, died there around 5 p.m. Thursday, the release said.

Authorities became suspicious after Hawkins told hospital personnel that she, the 16-year-old and the two children had been at a nearby lake, where the girls smelled flowers before collapsing.

“This is by far the most horrific case of child endangerment that I have seen in the 37 years that I have been in law enforcement,” Hierholzer said.

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