Las Vegas Sun

April 16, 2014

Currently: 68° — Complete forecast | Log in | Create an account

Colo. mom acquitted of negligence in SUV deaths

Updated Friday, Jan. 31, 2014 | 12:14 p.m.

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (AP) — A jury has delivered a split verdict for a western Colorado woman whose two sons died of overheating after she left them in a running SUV last winter.

Jurors in Grand Junction acquitted Heather Jensen of criminally negligent homicide but found her guilty of child abuse resulting in death and false reporting.

They reached the verdict Friday after 1 ½ days of deliberations.

Prosecutors say 2-year-old William and 4-year-old Tyler died after Jensen left them in her SUV on Nov. 27, 2012, while she had sex and smoked marijuana in another vehicle nearby.

During the trial, Jensen's lawyer described the 25-year-old as a lonely widow trying to protect her children. Prosecutors portrayed her as selfish and a liar.

Jensen's lawyer says she couldn't have foreseen the risk.