St George News

County attorney reviews case as initial investigation concludes in death of baby left in hot car

HURRICANE – Intense attention has been focused on the death of 11-month-old Skyah Suwyn, who was left in a hot car in Hurricane Aug. 1, a day that saw temperatures approaching 100 degrees. So far, no one has been arrested and no charges have been filed in the case. However, the initial investigation by the Hurricane City Police Department has officially concluded, and Washington County Attorney Brock Belnap confirmed Thursday afternoon:

We have received the investigative reports from the Hurricane Police Department and are reviewing them carefully to determine what is in the interest of justice.

Skyah had been left in her car seat inside the vehicle for “a substantial period of time” before being discovered at 1 p.m., Hurricane Police Sgt. Brandon Buell said in an Aug. 1 statement. Road work forced Skyah’s mother, April Suwyn, to park down the street from her home, the Deseret News reported. April Suwyn then rushed inside to use the restroom and forgot that 11-month-old Skyah was still in the back seat. Skyah, who reportedly often slept while her mother worked, wasn’t discovered until April Suwyn went to pick her sons up from the babysitter.

“In her mind, she had laid Skyah down for a nap,” the child’s aunt, Aimee Wright, told the Deseret News. “That was her normal routine before she would start doing nails.”

Skyah is at least the 20th child to have died unattended in a hot vehicle so far this year in the United States, according to KidsAndCars.org. The incidents when children survive, thanks to intervention by authorities or alert passersby, don’t get as much attention but are very common. However, no one formally keeps track of nonfatal cases.

The law

Throughout the United States, criminal charges have been filed in 49 percent of child vehicular heat stroke death cases since 1998, according to KidsAndCars.org, the same organization that lists Skyah’s death as the 20th this year. In those cases that have been decided, 81 percent resulted in convictions or guilty pleas and half brought jail sentences – with the median sentence being two years. Of 220 cases in which a child was unknowingly left in a car, about half led to charges and at least 62 resulted in convictions.

Currently, 20 states, including Utah, have laws specifically addressing leaving a child unattended in a vehicle. In hopes of deterring parents from making that sometimes fatal decision, Utah Criminal Code Section 76-10-2202, subtitled “Leaving a child unattended in a motor vehicle,” was enacted during the state’s General Session 2011.

The new statute gave law enforcement options for cases involving children left alone in cars. In a debate over the bill that gave rise to the criminal statute, Sen. Ben McAdams said the bill would add needed clarity to the law that leaving a child unattended in a motor vehicle under circumstances that constitute risk is behavior that needs to be punished, but is not child abuse.

Instead of issuing charges of child abuse or neglect, deemed far more serious in nature, the newer statute gives authorities the ability to cite parents with a class C misdemeanor, at least on the first offense.

To criminally charge April Suwyn, prosecutors would have to prove she committed a reckless act rather than one resulting from inattention or mistaken judgment.

Often, reaction when stories like these emerge is disbelief that parents or guardians could be so inattentive. But sometimes it’s not that simple.

A horrible mistake

In July, the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office in California announced it would not charge a California man who accidentally left his 9-month-old son in the back seat of his car all day, deeming the April 16 hot car death a tragic mistake by an otherwise conscientious father.

In that instance, the mother normally took the two older children to school and dropped the baby off at a babysitter three days a week, according to NBC, but on the day his son died, the father, going on only four hours of sleep, forgot about a change in his family’s routine.

The father took his older children to school and then drove off toward his work, where he dropped off his personal car to pick up his employer’s truck and forgot that the baby was sleeping in a car seat in the back. The child was not discovered until his father realized the mistake after his workday ended and he returned to the car that evening.

“Like most parents, I know how fatigue can sometimes rob us of common sense and good judgment,” District Attorney Jeff Rosen said in a statement in July. “While we have prosecuted child endangerment cases in the past, this tragedy does not rise to the level of recklessness that both the law and justice require.”

A felony mistake

A Florida man who ran inside his house to grab a cellphone charger left his 2-year-old daughter inside a hot car for hours after he allegedly fell asleep in the home, the Sarasota Herald-Tribune reported. The man was charged with felony aggravated manslaughter in connection with the death.

“He mistakenly left the child in the car,” Sgt. Tom Shanafelt told reporters at a news conference. “This is an extremely tragic, unfortunate event that no parent should ever have to deal with.”

The court of public opinion

While April Suwyn awaits her fate, thousands of people have taken to social media to express their opinions on the matter – some in utter outrage that charges have yet to be filed and others offering heartfelt sympathy to the Suwyn family.

Screen shot of a GoFundMe page set up for the Suwyn family where friends, family, and strangers have donated over $16,000 and left heartfelt messages of support, Aug. 7, 2014

Screen shot of a GoFundMe page set up for the Suwyn family where friends, family and strangers have donated over $16,000 and left heartfelt messages of support, Aug. 7, 2014

Within eight days of Skyah’s death, more than $17,000 was collected for the Suwyn family from more than 330 donors on a GoFundMe fundraising page. Supporters have also started selling vinyl car stickers designed to serve as a reminder to “Always check for baby.”

“Because of the tragic accident that has hit our Hurricane Community over this past weekend,” a Facebook post read, “ALL proceeds from now until Aug. 16 will go toward the family that lost their baby.”

As friends, family and strangers show their support for the Suwyn family, many others are outraged, going as far as creating a Facebook page called “Charge April Suwyn for Killing her baby daughter,” which had only eight likes by Thursday evening and was eventually deleted.

Screen shot of Facebook page taken Aug. 5, 2014

Screen shot of Facebook page taken Aug. 5, 2014

“April Suwyn murdered her baby daughter in Hurricane, Utah by leaving her hot car,” the Facebook page read. “Now her family is raising money and profiting off her baby’s death!”

“It was an accident,” Wright told Deseret News. “If people who are being negative could even see how hard she is on herself. If they could see that she keeps saying, ‘If only. If only. If only. I wouldn’t have been out of my routine that day. If only I had gone to the gym.’ She blames it all on herself.”

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  103 Comments
  1. Utah Mom August 14, 2014 at 6:29 pm · Reply

    I bet this woman gets off with noting for what she did simply because she says it was an “accident”, forgetting to buy buy something at the store is an accident not forgetting you have a baby. Something like “there was road construction and I had to use the bathroom” is zero excuse for forgetting you have a baby that you never, ever check on all day long while they sleep. And then people who think it is OK to leave your baby in the car to die have rewarded her with over $16,000!! Appalling to say the least. After reading this article I am sure she will now use the “I was fatigued” excuse for her blatant neglect. Very sad day indeed. My heart goes out to the family but not to this woman at all.

    • Cd August 14, 2014 at 9:36 pm · Reply

      You are such a scumbag! You think this woman is getting off with nothing? She will live her own personal hell for the rest of her life. Have some compassion. You’re an ignorant human being and have no right to judge her!

      • DAVE August 15, 2014 at 1:21 pm · Reply

        “CD”,
        1.) What gives YOU the right to judge “UTAH MOM” and then claim that SHE has no right to judge someone?
        2.) Resorting to labeling “UTAH MOM” as “an ignorant human being” and “such a scumbag”, speaks volumes about YOUR judgemental attitude.
        3.) “UTAH MOM” does (in fact) show compassion, but it’s toward the victim… Which you only seem to see as the mother being the victim, because of all the negative comments.

      • Stac August 31, 2014 at 4:50 pm · Reply

        This woman killed her child!!!!!! W#ASHINGTON COUNTY ATTORNEY BROCK BELNAP is ok with that!!!! AND THE JUDGE TOO>> Is it because she is MORMAN< NOT POORATTRACTIVE AND THE ATTONERY WANTS TO GET SOMETHIJG MORE FROM HER????????????I can’t seem to figure out why someone who was not on a mind altering substance is getting away with letting A helpless, DEPENDANT small child burn in her own car….. she forgot about her….. Shame on you JUDGE both of you are just a bad as she is……. and very INCOMPETED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! SHAME SHAME SHAME

      • Stac August 31, 2014 at 4:57 pm · Reply

        CD right to judge anyone who did what she did>>>>>> I can judge.. you seem just as incompentant as the judge and attorney are. She just allowed her child to burn in a car cause she accidently forgot about her.. wow what kind of person are you…. SHE DESREVES …*; Just like her forgotten child!!!!!!
        Ed. ellipsis …*

    • Mark Vinclio August 15, 2014 at 9:11 pm · Reply

      I agree she should be charged. after your caught you can call or do anything to make it look good but you kill a human….child

    • Lillith70 August 16, 2014 at 8:14 am · Reply

      Distracted in a bus, busy world? But equal justice under the law would demand equal treatment of the busy and forgetful. But may break up the family more. After a tragedy like this, it is hard to keep a couplship going forward.

    • Koolaid August 16, 2014 at 1:46 pm · Reply

      Was she distracted by text messages? Shopping for junior clothing for herself to look like a high school cheer leader (dresses) or volleyball player (shorts?). Busy discussing with a church brother her relationship drama? Did the dog need attention? Just too young to have gotten married and pregnant in the first place? What forgivable excuse does she have? Crap! If this had been a pet dog left in the car, the herd would want her head!

    • ME August 22, 2014 at 6:44 pm · Reply

      REWARDED???? ARE YOU CLUELESS???? she is not going to see a penny of that. It is not even going to be enough to cover life flight, hospital, funeral, legal expenses, you have any idea about the financial crap this thing ALSO carries along with it? No. you don’t. PLUS… she has said that if they do get enough to cover the expenses, she is DONATING the rest to fund a high school girls winning science fair project to remind moms to check the back seat when they put a car seat in. So… yeah… You are a little too quick to judge a woman you don’t even know the whole story. And her story ISN’T that she was fatigued. It’s that in her mind she believed she had laid her baby down for a nap. Yes, she believed she left her sleeping baby in her crib to run her boys down the street to the babysitters. She ADMITTED to that. so back off. She is willing to take the courts ruling. But so many people are demanding “justice” for something they know nothing about. That isn’t “justice”. It’s called vengeance. and it is wrong.

  2. The Rest Of The Story August 14, 2014 at 6:53 pm · Reply

    “To criminally charge April Suwyn, prosecutors would have to prove she committed a reckless act rather than one resulting from inattention or mistaken judgment.”

    The original report said that the baby was not discovered until she got to the babysitter’s house. But it also said that she usually called a neighbor to watch the sleeping baby while she would go pick up the 2 boys from the babysitter. For some reason, on this day, she didn’t call a neighbor to watch the baby, or she would have discovered before arriving at the sitter. We are to believe that if the baby had been down for a nap, she would have been left alone sleeping. An 11-month old, left alone sleeping while nobody was at the house.

    How would that by itself not constitute a reckless act?

    There is something very, very wrong about all of this. It smells fishier than a wharf.

    • Sl August 19, 2014 at 6:22 am · Reply

      I agree with everything you say. There is something missing here. Does the mother have post partum depression. How in the world do you forget your baby girl? For several hrs and if you thought she was napping why didn’t you check on her ? And why would you leave her alone when you leave the house? That behavior points to neglect. Are her other children safe with her?

  3. BOBBER August 14, 2014 at 7:09 pm · Reply

    I think some jail time might be the best thing in this case. It would give the perpetrator time to reflect on what she did. I think it would be for her own good. Might even help with the guilt…

  4. Voice of Reason August 14, 2014 at 8:12 pm · Reply

    I pray for charges to be filed. This should be a no-brainer for the county attorney. His duty is to file charges. It is the duty of the judge and/or jury to determine guilt or intent.

    • Hurricane Father August 15, 2014 at 3:44 pm · Reply

      I believe he is of the same ilk, you can bet he won’t charge her! I think he will lead everyone singing Kumbaya and then pray. Then they can all have root beer and discuss how all the outsiders are horrible, judgmental people!

      • Lillith70 August 16, 2014 at 8:27 am · Reply

        Tempering justice with mercy is not always easy but i agree to some extent that “white collar” crime gets too much of a pass here.

        For example, a historical site on National Register being desecrated due to ignorance on part of officials.

        In this case the mother gets more of a pass than the father would or a step-father or step-mother, even?

        The rest of your frustration shown–growing pains. The community goes for growth and someday the metro area will be democrat controlled as cities are. The whole tone of the culture and society will change.

        Anyone with a chip on their shoulder is less than apt to add to a community based on cooperation rather than competition. It is pretty hard to take when those the nation has deemed “the others” are in charge of things. What do we want to create together? A diverse community with equal respect for all?

        The same ilk? huh?

    • Sl August 19, 2014 at 6:24 am · Reply

      Agree

  5. Not Convinced... August 14, 2014 at 9:29 pm · Reply

    I honestly think they should prosecute the mother for a couple of reasons.

    First of all; whether through oversight or recklessness an act of neglect occurred and having the facts decided by a trial of her peers will either prove that or absolve her of the doubt that she will live under otherwise. I’ve tried hard to ‘see it from her perspective’ but as a parent I never made that unthinkable mistake and I cannot understand how anyone could go HOURS without realizing it. Still, no judgement without the facts…but I wish a group of people could decide by trial of fact.

    Secondly, Hurricane Police Department is the most notorious “good ole boys club” in the area. It’s not disputable. The good officers on the department are slandered and the bad ones get a ‘by’ because that’s just the way it’s done in Hurricane. They know your family or you are wrong. You’re a ‘pioneer’ or you’re an ‘outsider’. If they do not prosecute this case, given the fact that the baby’s father was reported (maybe just on social media?) to be a Hurricane Firefighter…it will look like the parents ‘got away with it’ and run the lives of a lot of people, including themselves.

    This case needs to be investigated and decided outside of city limits. The only way for resolve it conclusively is to hear the facts in court. Just my opinion. Peace to the families involved. Your pain and horror resonate through the entire county and the soul of every other parent who is also, regrettably, just human.

    • Festus August 14, 2014 at 11:42 pm · Reply

      You shouldnt get your facts on social media.. Very inaccurate. And the decision to prosecute is up to the county attorney not the police department..

    • B.S. August 15, 2014 at 6:48 am · Reply

      Where in any story did it say the father was a hurricane fire fighter. He is in fact a BLM firefighter, not at all affiliated with hurricane fire. Secondly I think you are a little over the top on your assessment of Hurricane Pd. Thats just my two cents I will trust which ever way the county attorney goes with. He will have all the facts unlike all of the people who have commented on both sides of this story.

    • Dunce August 15, 2014 at 12:54 pm · Reply

      Looks like you are spewing all sorts of opinions you are unable to back up. The father does not work for the city. I spoke to several Hurricane officers and found that most are not even from Hurricane. I think your “good ol boys” argument is without merit.

    • Mark Vinclio August 15, 2014 at 9:14 pm · Reply

      You can’t blame this on the police…how dumb are you. learn the legal system or did you stop going yo school in the eighth grade.

  6. Jacer August 14, 2014 at 9:58 pm · Reply

    No justice system on this earth or in this universe can give her a more severe punishment than she gave herself that day.

    • Sl August 19, 2014 at 6:29 am · Reply

      How do you know this? She could gave planned this. As sick as it is, it’s done.

  7. Char August 14, 2014 at 11:34 pm · Reply

    There are lots of people who feel guilty or ‘bad’ because their actions have killed someone. That does not absolve them of their actions contributing to the death of another. I do not think this woman should be able to accept any monetary donations and should hand it all over to a child abuse center. She was negligent in running out of the car without her daughter just to go to the bathroom. Why did she leave the child in the car and not take her with her? No matter how much she had to go, it was not worth the life of her child.

  8. DAVE August 14, 2014 at 11:43 pm · Reply

    1.) Whether your 11-month old has the great habit of sleeping for hours at a time, or not – I think few would disagree that you would (at the very least) check on your child, at least once an hour?

    2.) If your 11 month-old daughter typically sleeps until / past the time that you are to pick up your other children from the sitter’s down the street and you typically did not check once an hour – wouldn’t you be certain to check on your baby, before you left?

    3.) If she thought that she had put her baby down for a nap – then I wonder if the mother assumed that she already had, because it was part of her morning routine to do so, (BEFORE) dropping her sons off at the babysitter’s house?

    4.) No mention of a neighbor comment , as to whether-or-not the neighbor – or any salon clients were present, before or after the mother left to go to the sitter’s?

    Too many “what-if’s” and too few explanations… As far as the general public is concerned, these questions will more-than-likely never be answered. Yet the story was shared and everyone should feel the “right-to-know”, so as to take nothing out-of-context.

    Definitions of Child Abuse and Neglect

    Abandonment
    Citation: Ann. Code § 78A-6-105
    “Child abandonment” means that a parent or legal guardian of a child:
    (D) involves a substantial risk of death to the child.
    (I) any conduct that causes a child to cease breathing, even if resuscitation is successful following the conduct

    Neglect
    Citation: Ann. Code § 78A-6-105
    Failure of a parent or other person with responsibility for the child to provide needed food, clothing, shelter, medical care, or supervision to the degree that the child’s health, safety, and well-being are threatened with harm.

    I would much rather see this woman be ordered to undergo a psychiatric evaluation, to determine if she is going to be in the right frame of mind to continue to care for her other two children and for herself … than go to jail.

    I would much rather that she be further ordered to complete several thousand hours of community service (perhaps anything about child safety) … than tens of thousands of hours, in a jail cell.

    My heart goes out to the overwhelming feeling of remorse she must have – yet at the same time I am morose as to how this could have happened, in the first place.

    • Lillith70 August 16, 2014 at 8:34 am · Reply

      Distracted by an overly busy job and maybe by anxiety. BLM firefighter? May not be from local majority .

      Judge not the judgers or the police until more evidence is in?

      Nothing brings the baby back. And how is justice and society best served? Glad that it is not my decision to make.

  9. me123 August 15, 2014 at 12:12 am · Reply

    How can u be out of routine with ur children…. how can think u put the baby down for a nap but then try to leave the house without her to retrieve the other children… don’t downgrade penalties cause ppl r sorry…. they all r sorry and there all accidents… sad but true

    • Lillith70 August 16, 2014 at 8:40 am · Reply

      This is something I do not like is sentencing based on remorse shown, making a good actor more apt to get a lighter sentence than another who is more reserved or stoic by nature or nurture. That alone would make certain minorities more apt to get harsher sentences???

      Mercy for one might make for future mischief done on purpose? Again, glad I do not have to make the call and sad for the family and especially the busy working Mom. We lost a dog this way and the horror of it is fading but never goes away completely–the if only, if only thing.

      We project ourselves into the judging of this case as usual? As we mull if it were me, under what circumstances could it happen?

      The comments here could be used to create a cultural slice of our community.

  10. DJR August 15, 2014 at 8:17 am · Reply

    It is OK to have compassion and understanding for this woman and her family, while holding her responsible for her neglect.
    The law provides for a wide variety of charges and punishments for acts resulting in the death of another,from inadvertent accident to premeditated murder.
    When a child, who is totally dependent on the judgement and care of an adult is completely failed, the scrutiny of law must be allowed,and expected to follow the course of investigation and punishment or sanction.
    Meanwhile the compassion of family and community must be exercised. This is different than condoning the behavior. Above all else, make certain that we do not make the same mistake.

    • Kitty August 15, 2014 at 3:55 pm · Reply

      Well said.

  11. Incognegro (Josh Dalton) August 15, 2014 at 8:42 am · Reply

    Well I guess I am going to have to be the one to say it….What if this was a Hispanic, Black, or Asian woman, regardless of her religious beliefs. They would have locked her up and thrown away the key! Or she would have at least been locked up during the investigation. This gal gets to sit at home and rake in the cash to help her pay her bond when she is charged by the people in Civil court. Then she will skip town and get away with murder. Its is murder right? We are going to pull DNA from a cats claws to find its killer, but give a break to the person who leaves a infant in a hot car. Something is not right.

    • Dunce August 15, 2014 at 12:54 pm · Reply

      I don’t believe that needed to be said. The race argument is outdated.

      • DAVE August 15, 2014 at 1:57 pm · Reply

        If you would look further into the intended meaning of that comment – the “race argument” is never outdated… Did you know that:

        Janet Johnson, a criminal defense attorney in Florida and frequent law commentator on new shows, stated:
        “There’s a higher level of scrutiny if you don’t have good character”.

        Janet Johnson, a criminal defense attorney in Florida and frequent law commentator on new shows, stated:
        There’s a higher level of scrutiny if you don’t have good character”.
        and also – Jennifer Collins concluded in her 2006 study “Crime and Parenthood”, that:
        Parents from blue-collar families and those who were unemployed were much more likely to be prosecuted in cases of children dying from hypothermia in cars, Jennifer Collins concluded in her 2006 study “Crime and Parenthood.”

        “Southern Utah” Is perceived to be predominantly White / Mormon and if you go further into looking at the demographic of Utah itself – 86% of the population in Utah is white (2010), while Hispanic was only 9% and Blacks were a mere 1.1%.

        Most people I think would feel safe in the assumption that being labeled as an active member of the LDS church has the advantage of it being your “Trump Card” to the way you will automatically be perceived, within your community… Those of questionable alternate beliefs, need not apply

        • Lillith70 August 16, 2014 at 9:06 am · Reply

          White guy in Florida being charges but look at the difference. He could be a lapsed LDS? if he were a protestant pastor what do you think he would have said or done differently? And how forgiving the people of the south at his “repentant” words?

          Nothing is ever as simple as it seems as we project our own inner selves into every judgement we make?

          I didn’t feel for this father being caught since he was a druggie and didn’t think he had done wrong–defensive, etc.

          We have a saying in our small town, “everyone comes for the rural feel and community , then start asking for curb and gutter.” We all are our own worst enemies IMO.

          http://www.theindychannel.com/news/u-s-world/dad-arrested-after-9-month-old-baby-left-alone-in-hot-car

    • Lillith70 August 16, 2014 at 8:56 am · Reply

      And she is not of a minority?

      But I do agree that some things appear to be favoritism when it is white collar crime for sure. Would Hispanic, Black, and Asian of any religion be less biased if in power?

      Mormons are the only minority group in the USA where it is okay or free game to make derogatory statements about? America’s “others”.

      Kind of a culture shock to move into a place because it is hyped as an ideal place and then have to have in positions of power the same types of conservative living folks who formed the society.

      Kind of like the people in Missouri are feeling about Michael Brown being shot by a cop. Minority rancor against those in power, a powder keg of anger (which is human psychology’s predictable reaction to power)

      Being in the Mormon state but not of the Mormons? Would you feel less free to complain and criticize in a Mexico or other banana republic, or in an Islamic country?

    • Mark Vinclio August 16, 2014 at 9:11 am · Reply

      stop with the race crap have you look at who lives in the white house he isn’t white and they are not repressed anymore.

  12. tom August 15, 2014 at 9:25 am · Reply

    The laws are very contradictory. If someone had “forgot” about someone else and it caused their death, it is 9 times out if 10 negligent homocide. Even if they had no previous bad behaviour. I am not bagging on this mother, I am bagging on the Justice System for contradicting themselves at every turn. If someone living in their own personal hell was the norm for pushishment then why do we have courts?

  13. Angie August 15, 2014 at 2:01 pm · Reply

    I hope the mother isn’t prosecuted. It was obviously unintentional, and she is already suffering, as is her family. It would be a cruel and unnecessary thing to put this family through more pain to prosecute someone who would never intentionally harm her child.

    • voice of reason August 15, 2014 at 3:06 pm · Reply

      it was a cruel and unnecessary thing for the child to be cooked alive in the car.

  14. Mother from Hurricane August 15, 2014 at 2:11 pm · Reply

    I am shocked in how cruel, mean, hateful, angry and negative most of these comments are! I know April and she is NOT what you deem that she is! SHE is suffering her own HELL for what she did or did not do! She has 2 wonderful boys that need their mother because they too are suffering. April is a caring, loving, and attentive mother! I have seen and witnessed the way she treats all of her children. She is very protective of them! None of you haters KNOW HER!!! You have NO idea what is going on in her mind and how she is killing herself for what happened. Please STOP these hateful comments….and look inside yourselves and find compassion!!!! Pray for her and her family. She is a wonderful mother and individual and does not deserve all your criticism. Because, believe it or not, she is her worst judge and critic. The people in Hurricane KNOW her and her family. AND we stand by her and are trying to offer support to her and her family in this awful time! It is a sad situation and she does NOT deserve to be crucified!

    • Righteous August 15, 2014 at 3:22 pm · Reply

      Well Mother from Hurricane you are obviously incapable of being impartial. You may know how April suffers but facts are facts. I would crap my pants before I would ever EVER ! leave my child in a car DOWN THE STREET alone. Fact is she was given a gift from God – God’s child to care for and she neglected her and killed her. Intentional or not. There IS a good ole boys club here ! Seen it Firsthand many times ! There IS a race factor and an LDS factor here also :) If you don’t believe there is then you must be White and LDS. Just because it was her daughter and she feels bad does not eliminate the facts of the matter. She needs to be punished for her actions or the lack thereof as every parent who FORGOT about their obligations tired or not, busy whatever – there needs to be uniformity in the law ! If there are consequences to actions people may start to wake up. Children are a #1 priority ! People only respond when they will suffer a consequence. Take that money away from her! REPULSIVE! CPS should look into the other 2 childrens welfare as she is unfit to have children apparently they are too much for her busy schedule and they are not a priority in her life. It is outrageous that someone left in the care of someone else and dies will not be held responsible for their neglect !

      • Incognegro (Josh Dalton) August 16, 2014 at 9:58 am · Reply

        WELL SAID!!

      • Frank August 16, 2014 at 12:07 pm · Reply

        I am sure everyone on here that is calling for her to be prosecuted also believe that there should be a fence between America and Mexico. You also believe that every single illegal alien should be arrested and sent back to Mexico. I mean if you say the law is the law then you also can’t say that it is racist to want every single Mexican or other nationals to be arrested. Where are your vial comments on illegals. That is by far a greater killer and threat to America than a mom. How many innocent Americans are killed by illegal aliens each year? Don’t be hypocrites. I am tired of all of you trying to make this an LDS thing. I doubt it will say LDS in any police reports or any report from the DA. It is you racist people trying to make it into a religious situation against the LDS community. Here, I will say it like it has been said before…..if you don’t like it here then move. If you despise Mormons that much go to another state. Whenever you people can’t think of anything intelligent to say you pull the race card or LDS card. People that drink beer in America are a far greater threat to society than a mom. Where is your outcry on beer drinkers? How many infants have died from drunk drivers? Look that up. I don’t see you picketing the local Maverick store and requesting them to stop selling beer. An intelligent person would prioritize the threats and you are all way off. If you truly cared about society like you pretend to, you would be here everyday slamming illegal aliens and alcohol drinkers. I mean like a lot of you are saying…the law is the law. Why don’t you volunteer to drive illegals back to the nearest border? I think it is REPULSIVE that you are as dumb as you are and part of society.

        • TALENTEDLADY August 16, 2014 at 3:00 pm · Reply

          HAVE YOU BEEN DRINKING. YOUR COMMENT IS RAMBLING AND INCOHERENT. PLEASE DONT PREACH ABOUT THE DANGERS OF DRINKING WHEN YOU ARE CLEARLY DRUNK.

          • Frank August 16, 2014 at 7:15 pm ·

            You must be a drinker because you are getting angry. Do you drink and watch your kids?

        • ladybugavenger August 17, 2014 at 12:52 am · Reply

          Frank(ly), this is not about illegal aliens. Its about an 11 month old that died a horrific death in a hot car. It doesn’t happen a lot because a reasonable person would not leave a child in the car! Even people who drink and/or do drugs don’t leave a baby in a hot car or there would be a lot more instances. Justice! Allow her to have her day in court.

          • ladybugavenger August 17, 2014 at 1:01 am ·

            If she had been drinking or on drugs you all know she would be arrested. Why is this so different. Is it different because she neglected her child, and the child died in a hot car and she wasn’t under the influence of a substance. People can’t find a justification for this act, an excuse of oh she was on drugs, oh she drinks. People say she’s a good mom because their is no substance involved. Frank(ly) a good mom knows where their 11 month old child is.

    • Hurricane Father August 15, 2014 at 3:38 pm · Reply

      I keep forgetting that this story is all about her, not the poor child who suffered then died! Had this mother not been LDS then the outpouring would have been much different, the cry for justice much louder. Since she is everyone just wants to turn a blind eye and say it’s all good. How many times have the LDS is Hurricane rallied around and donated to a non member? So sick and tired of people saying your judging her, then they turn around and judge the commenters or call them names! Then there is the people who tell people to shut and and quit saying this and that, sorry you forgot we live in a country with free speech!

      • sing4money August 15, 2014 at 8:18 pm · Reply

        I agree, I think a lot of people who are of the LDS religion cry for justice when it is someone not of the same religion and than pull the I don’t wanna judge crap when it is someone of their faith. I don’t care if this lady is LDS or not…I think she made a horrible mistake but I wouldn’t want to live in a world where we aren’t allowed to make a mistake without the entire community calling for my prosecution. It would be much different if it were someone in your family.

      • Frank August 16, 2014 at 12:11 pm · Reply

        When did you hear on the news that they are turning a blind eye because she is LDS? I didn’t see it in any report from the police or DA. It sounds like you want a free handout from others. I can give my money to whoever I want. It seems you forgot you live in a country that I have the freedom to do whatever I want with my money. If you want some free money then let me know your number and we can meet up and I will give you a few bucks. We can also have a father to father talk.

        • Koolaid August 16, 2014 at 1:48 pm · Reply

          Is her tithing up to date?

          • Frank August 16, 2014 at 7:16 pm ·

            Wow, another one that is a butt hurt former Mormon.

        • pissed August 18, 2014 at 10:32 pm · Reply

          I keep seeing on all the sites everyone supports the community that’s bs there is a few others on go fund me that are a part of our great town. They don’t get help. What are they from the wronge side of the tracks. April should be charged and the attorney should not be able to do anything the supporters of April are sending in so many stories. For one side ….maybe we should all start sending him letters why she should be charged.

    • My Evil Twin August 15, 2014 at 3:40 pm · Reply

      I’ve looked inside myself, and found compassion. Compassion for an 11 month old girl that was “cooked” inside a car. Now I’m not from Hurricane, and I don’t know April. Fact is, I don’t want to know April. I hope she is prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, and I believe Child Protective Services should take a long hard look at whether her two boys should stay in the home, or need to be removed. How old are the boys, anyway?

    • Mx I Can August 16, 2014 at 12:45 am · Reply

      Mother from Hurricane,

      Most of the comments I read here are those that call for common sense. It is very unfortunate that a child died as a result of this ‘accident’. However, that doesn’t mean that the mother in this case should get a ‘get out of jail’ free ride for her mere suffering.
      The law is the law and it should be applied across the board. Same thing happened to George Zimmerman. Remember that case? My point is that he finally got his day in court and eventually got free.
      Same should apply to April. She should have her day in court and leave it to a jury. The argument that her other two kids and husband need her, blah, blah, blah blah, doesn’t cut it. Same should be said then to the thousands of persons that are going through trial proceedings all over the country/world. What about their families too?
      Enough Said

  15. Allie August 15, 2014 at 2:36 pm · Reply

    The “normal routine” for any parent with a totally dependent child should always be: where is the baby? That thought should be first and foremost in any parents mind at all times. People can train themselves to do that. If you back into the garage door, that is an accident. If you make a left hand turn instead of a right hand turn, that is a mistake. They can be fixed or corrected. Forgetting you are responsible for a child? Some people are not brought up to take responsibility to have children. Unfortunately, there is no test. But, I think there should be legal consequences for her actions. There should be a record of some sort of this persons negligence. What if she works in a day care center? Do you want her to forget about your child? Yes, she can be regretful about her actions, but ya can’t fix stupid.

  16. voice of reason August 15, 2014 at 3:05 pm · Reply

    I wish you “mothers” and “friends” would stop for a second and look at things as a rational human being. The law is clear. If a child dies, that is under your care and control, as a direct result of your actions, whether the death was intentional or not, it’s child abuse. It’s not about hate or “being a hater”, it’s about the Laws of the Great State of Utah. We are a society of order and laws, when they are broken, those who break them need to appear before a judge and/or jury of their peers to have judgement rendered. It doesn’t matter if the mother feels horrible or if she’s “punishing herself enough”. The state has an interest to protect the defenseless. An 11 month old strapped in a car seat is defenseless. The other thing you “mothers” and “personal friends” need to get through your heads is this isn’t about April. It’s about the baby. The baby who is now dead because it couldn’t get out of the car seat where she was strapped by her mother.

  17. Rachel August 15, 2014 at 3:16 pm · Reply

    So I ask all of you who are going on and on about this woman needing to be prosecuted…. Tell me honestly, if it were your bishops wife who made this same mistake would any of you feel the same? Would you be this vocal if it were your bishop who made this mistake?

    • Voice of Reason August 15, 2014 at 6:17 pm · Reply

      Tell me honestly, If it was a babysitter who had left the child in the car, instead of the mother, would you be more vocal in calling for justice?

      • sing4money August 15, 2014 at 8:14 pm · Reply

        Tell me voice of reason…if it were your daughter who made this horrible mistake, would you want her to go to prison? I don’t know the mother or family, I just know that most of these people are full of shit when they demand justice when I would bet that if it were someone in their church, their family, etc. that maybe they would feel differently. I don’t think she is getting special treatment cuz she is LDS, I think she is being defended because some of us are level headed enough to see that people make mistakes. Yes, it is a serious mistake but we make them. Case in point…why did those boys in santa clara (LDS) who decided to kidnap and trap in their trunk a young girl only receive a slap on the wrist? Could it be that it was a stupid ass thing to do but we know that some people make stupid mistakes? They should be in prison! What do you think…should they be in prison?

        • Voice of Reason August 16, 2014 at 11:10 am · Reply

          Yes, the boys from Santa Clara should be in prison. Kidnapping is not a joke, or a prank. It is a capital offense. Playing the “If” game gets nowhere. My kids know there are consequences for mistakes. My mistakes have never caused a baby to be cooked alive in a car and die.

      • Rachel August 15, 2014 at 8:22 pm · Reply

        If it were my sitter who made the same mistake, I would not want her prosecuted. She made a mistake and yes it is horrible and ugly, but she made a mistake. I would not need her in prison to feel better and I feel a little sorry for whomever you are married to cuz it is apparent that if this happened to your spouse, you would abandon them when they need you most. Before you respond….think, what would you do if it were your spouse?

      • ME August 22, 2014 at 6:38 pm · Reply

        if it was a mistake it was a mistake. period. i would never use the sitter, but I wouldn’t seek prison for someone who made an honest mistake. ever. Honest meaning – not seeking to break laws or neglect kids. If a sitter PURPOSEFULLY left a child… another story. and maybe THAT is where the courts and not article comments get to be the judge on this one. Not us. THEY will hear the WHOLE story. YOU get only your tiny brain and half the story and are making judgement calls.

    • really? August 15, 2014 at 7:34 pm · Reply

      Yes religion shouldn’t have a play on whether a person is guilty or not. Facts are facts. Even when i go run errands and my baby is with his dad or grandma I always check because I feel like something is missing.

    • My Evil Twin August 15, 2014 at 7:48 pm · Reply

      You don’t seem to comprehend that this is about a DEAD BABY, not about the person who caused the baby to be dead. I don’t care WHO it is, including one of my own kids, if they were that irresponsible and careless, they deserve everything the law can throw at them.

      • ME August 22, 2014 at 6:35 pm · Reply

        It isn’t just about a dead baby. it IS about her. find your good twin so they can speak instead of the evil one that seeks first to judge instead of understand how this happened to an otherwise good mother. it is very very very much about her. to pretend it is just about a dead baby is to hide behind something so scary and awful and use it as an excuse to not seek understanding.

      • Sl August 24, 2014 at 7:53 pm · Reply

        Amen!

    • Hurricane Father August 15, 2014 at 9:30 pm · Reply

      I want everyone prosecuted that breaks the law, it doesn’t matter their age, race, sex or religion!

    • Mark Vinclio August 16, 2014 at 9:17 am · Reply

      heck yes I would maybe I wouldn’t have to keep paying him 10% of my wage.

    • Incognegro (Josh Dalton) August 16, 2014 at 10:21 am · Reply

      You are darn right I would! Especially if it was a Bishop or his wife. I’m not allowed in their tier in Heaven anyway. I look at it this way. If you not my doctor then I call you Mr. or Mrs Suchandsuch not Doctor. If the Pope or Mother Teresa, President Obama, that Bundy dude left an infant to die in a hot car then they should be charged with something! Negligent manslaughter is a slap on the wrist.Bishop or not. … if was my own wife I would hate to see her go to prison. I would put some money on her books like a good husband should do!
      Ed. ellipsis.

  18. tom August 15, 2014 at 7:27 pm · Reply

    Based on reading comments on this website for the last year and a half, I will say that nearly all of the people defending this woman would not be doing so if the person was not white or from the same social class. That is extremely sad but also extremely true. Examine your conscience.

    • ME August 22, 2014 at 6:33 pm · Reply

      Tom, that was a racist thing to say and untrue. I would defend anyone in her situation. how dare you judge me like that. I examined my conscience like you suggested and I know this to be true of me and most of the people I know that are defending her. IF… they have the SAME story and IF I knew what that story was… YES, i would defend them. HOWEVER…. IF they purposefully left their baby in the car – KNOWING their baby was in the car… THAT is another story. April is willing to admit she thought she left her baby asleep in the crib at home while she ran down the street to the babysitter with her boys. She admits to it. YES, it was still leaving a baby, but in her mind her baby was safe in her crib, not the car. Still not the greatest scenario, but not the monster everyone wants to make of her. Her story is not only believable, but plausible and happens every day. She NEVER would leave her babies in the car. I know this and would testify on a stand to defend her. even if she were poor or mexican or black or on welfare. Period.

  19. look at the facts August 15, 2014 at 7:39 pm · Reply

    I believe the mother should have charges brought against her for neglect which would be a misdemeanor charge in the state of Utah. Recently the same thing happen in another state and the father was charged . So before stating she’s living in hell everyday. If you was the DA would you press criminal charges? If you say no your saying the legal system shouldn’t give speeding citations either

  20. tom August 15, 2014 at 7:53 pm · Reply

    Just a question. .If someone who had never before texted while driving accidentally hit someone and killed them, they would get charged. But in this case the mother had never before neglected the child , why doesnt she get charged? Past behaviour should have nothing to do with it. But since it is part of the reasoning to not charge the mother, why cant it be part of the reasoning in another kind of case? I am not saying I understand the law, I am saying I dont understand it and I want some clarity on the matter. Will someone answer me?

    • ME August 22, 2014 at 6:28 pm · Reply

      Texing is a purposeful act and completely avoidable. forgetting a child is with you is NOT purposeful and not necessarily something that could have been prevented. If the mind tricks you into beleiving you had left your child elsewhere, why would you check the backseat? if your memory says you left the baby somewhere else? NOW…. to be fair…. her babysitter lives just down the street and This mother believed she had laid her baby down for a nap and jetted over to the sitter. SO…. yes, in her mind, she had left the baby unattended at home where she was rushing to get back to and forget her baby was actually in the car. Big difference between texting and forgetting your baby is with you.

  21. Justice August 15, 2014 at 8:09 pm · Reply

    I want justice for the victim, who is now dead. Last time I checked that was one of the purposes of out justice system. The idea that any mother could cook their child in the car and garner self-pity is ridiculous. Good parents don’t cook their children. So I could care less about the drug addict parents in this case, my concern is for the child that left its life…and for those so convinced their is some “better place” or “god needed her” your Mor(M)ons.

  22. KATE August 15, 2014 at 8:40 pm · Reply

    What if it was YOUR child she left in the car? Would it be an accident? A mistake? Would you want justice then?

  23. Mark Vinclio August 15, 2014 at 9:19 pm · Reply

    this lady needs charged that family is all messed up and was before this…Take her kids to a real mom before she kills them Mr County Attorney that is a pansy. Some day you need to stand up and do your job.

  24. Jeeper August 15, 2014 at 10:57 pm · Reply

    The mom prolly has already forgotten what happened, no worries for her.

    • tinker toys August 16, 2014 at 4:04 am · Reply

      Lol Jeeper, so true. She can’t recall by now.

  25. Jennifer Iverson August 15, 2014 at 11:46 pm · Reply

    I know this mother personally and have had the pleasure of observing her role as a mother and I have found her to be a top notch mother. I have a bachelor’s degree and graduated with honors in child development and major in family life studies and there were NEVER any signs of neglect in the physical apperiance of skyah or her other two chillren. Also all three children showed signs of a healthy attachment to thier mother. On EVERY occasion baby skyah was well groomed clean diaper, new full bottle, fully dressed, hair done, binky, bottle the works. This is not the sign of a mother not totally intrested in her children. This mother also created a lifestyle where her children had minimal interaction with babysitters by working from home. Mothers who are not totally committed to their children would rather drop them off at day care so not to be bothered While they work. April preferred to have her children close. Overall April is a very loving attentive parent who experienced a human error that has cost her more than society can even begin to imagine.

    • tinker toys August 16, 2014 at 10:10 am · Reply

      Please stop calling someone who murdered their child a top notch mother. Only in Utah!

      • ME August 22, 2014 at 6:25 pm · Reply

        Tinker tots…. to call someone a murderer that forgot her baby was with her is cruel and unusual. Would you call her a murderer to her face? Would you look at this woman who is mourning the loss of a child and call her a murderer???? if so… YOU are the one deserving of a more cruel eternal judgement. SHE is kind, loving and is in the deepest mourning you can imagine. She is beating herself up everyday for the fact that she FORGOT (which IS different than LEFT) her baby was in the car. I have done the exact same thing – MANY TIMES! MANY MANY MANY mothers have … they are not murderers… they are mothers that have moments of spaciness and forget a kid is still with them. It happens all the time!!! DO NOT call this woman a murderer. To do so is wrong on so many levels. her baby did die because of an accident. IT IS an accident to forget a kids is with you. It is not murder. She does not deserve to go to jail. She doesn’t deserve the harsh words people say about her. I am sick to my stomache because of the cruelty of you people. a baby dies and you are all out for blood and call it justice. that is not justice when you do not understand the “accused” and their actions. It is just plain vengeful. and it is a disease that is spreading by those who are the least caring loving people I could ever know. A loving person seeks first to understand. Not to cast judgement.

    • ladybugavenger August 16, 2014 at 10:20 am · Reply

      No sign??? The child is dead. Pretty big sign. I thought with all your degrees you would have seen that sign.you should throw your degrees away.

    • SHANNON August 16, 2014 at 11:38 am · Reply

      So let me get this right…Jennifer you are a specialist in child development and it is your opinion based on your top notch honors education that this woman is an incredible mom who made a mistake that resulted in the death of her child but I should consider myself a lesser than stellar mother who is not committed to my child because I leave my child in the care of another while I utilize my skills? Is that right? If I were you I would apologize to this woman for your sorry attempt to defend her parenting style.

    • AnnaRydal August 16, 2014 at 11:40 am · Reply

      Only in Utah would an educated woman come to the defense of another by claiming the woman is/was a good mother because her baby always had her hair done….your an idiot jennifer.

      • ME August 22, 2014 at 6:18 pm · Reply

        my kids don’t get their hair done by me and I forget the all the time. I think she is/was a better mother than I am. Put me in jail first.

    • TALENTEDLADY August 16, 2014 at 1:06 pm · Reply

      Jennifer if you havent considered this, you should open a private practice. Your observations of nice baby hair do and fully dressed baby is outstanding. You are clearly a highly intelligent person. And why … were you on the computer instead of watching your kids?
      Ed. ellipsis.

  26. Meliss Cyphers August 16, 2014 at 2:32 am · Reply

    Let those without sin, cast the first stone. She will be living a life sentence till the day she dies. Nothing could be worse. Pray for her!

    • Voice of Reason August 16, 2014 at 11:11 am · Reply

      The baby already got a life sentence.

      • ME August 22, 2014 at 6:17 pm · Reply

        actually, the baby suffered and died and is with Jesus in peace. kind of opposite a life sentence actually.

    • smith August 16, 2014 at 11:41 am · Reply

      I agree.

  27. Aaron August 16, 2014 at 12:38 pm · Reply

    Why isn’t there this much coverage and outrage over all of the child drownings in this state? Or, people backing over children? There’s a he** of a lot of that too. A woman backed over her own sister recently. Where’s the coverage and outrage over that?

  28. tinker toys August 16, 2014 at 12:43 pm · Reply

    Thinking people on national web sites out of Utah were people can think for themselves are bringing up good points. This was her third child, often the most difficult to adjust to. She put the child in the car recently not a long drive. Smells like murder.

    • ME August 22, 2014 at 6:16 pm · Reply

      uh… maybe YOU would murder a third child. But some of us have gone on to love 5 or 6 and still forget we have them with us at times when they fall asleep. yes… it is easy to do. guess how I know. and no, I don’t plan on killing any of my kids when I forget I have one still in the car. I am lucky to still have all my kids alive. I am a little spacey at times. But I do not hate my kids or resent having them.

  29. BOBBER August 16, 2014 at 3:20 pm · Reply

    IMAGINE BEING BAKED ALIVE IN AN OVEN!! IT JUST AINT RIGHT!! LET’S GET SOME JUSTICE HERE!!

  30. Jaybird August 17, 2014 at 6:34 pm · Reply

    Charged, guilty of child endangerment and neglect.

  31. pissed August 19, 2014 at 12:04 pm · Reply

    I keep seeing on all the sites everyone supports the community that’s bs there is a few others on go fund me that are a part of our great town. They don’t get help. What are they from the wronge side of the tracks. April should be charged and the attorney should not be able to do anything the supporters of April are sending in so many stories. For one side ….maybe we should all start sending him letters why she should be charged.

  32. ME August 22, 2014 at 6:13 pm · Reply

    Not realizing you still have your baby with you does NOT make you a bad mother. it makes you a human. Trying to claim that a good mother would not get distracted is ludicrous! Good moms get distracted EVERY DAY! April is one of the unlucky ones that did not catch her mistake soon enough. But to call her a criminal and claim she isn’t fit to be a mother… is just simply wrong. If you all knew how many times this happens without death of a child…. you would be SHOCKED! I can’t tell you how many stories I have heard from mothers in tears lately that confess they had a moment they forgot their baby was in the car and rushed out 10 minutes, 30 minutes and one woman HOURS later and found perfectly healthy babies. One woman told me her story as she sobbed… “I thought for sure I had just killed my baby, i didn’t even remember I had her with me after I dropped the boys off at the sitter. I had to send a friend out to my car to retrieve what I thought was going to my dead precious daughter. I am so lucky to have her still with me and I constantly feel guilty that I could have forgotten her.” THIS IS NOT A CRIMINAL!!!! THIS DOES HAPPEN TO GREAT PEOPLE! to assume she is a bad mother and should be locked away from her little boys is a very very ignorant stance on this situation. By the way, did you know that she is donating leftover funds (If there are any after paying for legal fees and life flight and hospital and funeral) to the girl that created the reminder device for babies left in cars and entered it at a science fair? Did you know there are now stickers of butterflies with her baby’s nickname being passed around for car windows to remind people to check the back seats? Did you know, she wished she had had something jog her memory a little that day and is doing everything she can to help other moms avoid her heartache? yeah… didn’t think you knew that. Otherwise, you would have shut your holes. she is an amazing mother and woman. But since you don’t know her, you are quick to jump in with throwing stones and casting judgement when you are all very very clueless about what happened and why.

    • tinker toys August 24, 2014 at 9:31 pm · Reply

      Stop calling someone who broiled their baby an awsome mother.

  33. pissed August 24, 2014 at 1:08 am · Reply

    Omg you make me laugh. If it had been your child she forgot you would probably have a different perspective. She should do time and the boys and her husband could visit her just like every one else does.

  34. Sl August 24, 2014 at 7:45 pm · Reply

    What happened to the Suwyn child was a crime. Child endangerment. Mom was in charge of her child and she neglected to keep her safe and out of danger. If UT has a legal system, we will witness an honest investigation of the mom and her family and her mental health.
    Would you leave your child with April? I think not if she has to have a reminder that she is a mother in charge of 3 or was on that day, when her plans were more important than the safety of her child. It is against the law to leave a child in the car or at home alone.

  35. Mike The Janitor August 25, 2014 at 10:14 am · Reply

    Click the link. This sums it all up. https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=278776785653714&set=vb.100005641838017&type=2&theater

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