Mother charged with murder after 5-year-old girl dies in hot bedroom

·2 min read
 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

A mother has been charged with murder after her five-year-old daughter died in a hot bedroom.

Police officers were called to a house in Las Vegas and found two girls locked in a room without air-conditioning on Monday, when temperatures exceeded 40C.

The eldest daughter was unresponsive and was then pronounced dead. Officers believe that the heat was the cause of the girl’s death.

Kemaya Taylor, 23, was arrested after the incident. She was charged with murder and two counts of child abuse at Las Vegas Justice Court on Thursday. She did not appear at the hearing as she had refused to leave her jail cell, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

Inmate records show that her preliminary hearing is now scheduled for July 15.

In court, Clark County prosecutor Steven Rose said that the air-conditioning was not on in the family’s home, but he did not have information as to whether it was turned off or disconnected. It was also not yet confirmed whether the death was caused by heat exhaustion.

The Clark County coroner’s office is investigating both the cause and manner of death.

Ms Taylor’s landlord, who asked not to be named, told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that the suspect was having financial problems and that she was struggling without her family nearby.

The landlord said: “[The neighbors] saw her out front, all her clothes out in the driveway.

“She had one of her babies in her arms in that heat with blankets covering her baby… in a fetal position... She got up and started smashing windows of cars around here.

The children’s grandmother Marisa Brown told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that her son was very involved in bringing up the children and that Ms Taylor had “all the help she needed”.

Ms Taylor’s youngest child, a daughter aged two, has been handed over to social services.

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