Utah woman charged with murder in baby deaths

Published on April 29, 2014 at 01:05PM

Prosecutors say a Utah woman was charged Monday with six counts of first-degree murder in the killing of her six babies over a decade, but she cannot face the death penalty if convicted. Utah County Attorney Jeff Buhman says 39-year-old defendant Megan Huntsman is accused of killing the babies between 1996 and 2006, before Utah law was changed in 2007 to make murder a capital offense if a victim was younger than 14. Until the law was passed, killing a child was not considered one of the aggravating factors that can make someone eligible for the death penalty. Such factors also include the victim being a police officer, the killing occurring while another crime, such as rape, was committed, or if the defendant has already been convicted of another murder. Killing more than one person also is considered a capital offense but only if they die in the same incident. Huntsman was being held on $6 million bail and is due back in court on May 19, when her attorneys can decide it they want to request an evidence hearing.