Megan Huntsman, the Utah woman accused of killing six newborns over the space of ten years and stuffing their bodies into a garage “tucked away among old shoes and an artificial Christmas tree” faces a formal hearing in December.
Charged with six counts of first-degree murder, the 39-year-old Huntsman has been held in Utah County Jail since April 13. Bail for Huntsman, who has not entered a plea, was set at $6 million.
She will appear before a state judge next month, the Associated Press reports.
Attorneys for Megan Huntsman, 39, decided Monday not to waive their right to a preliminary hearing. That proceeding has been set for Dec. 11. At the conclusion of the hearing, a judge will decide if there is sufficient proof to send the case to trial.
Huntsman is in jail on $6 million bail, charged with six counts of first-degree murder. She has not yet entered a plea. She made a brief appearance in court Monday, but didn’t speak.
Huntsman’s estranged husband discovered the infants’ bodies on April 12 while cleaning out the home they had shared in Pleasant Grove, Utah, a city of about 35,000 south of Salt Lake City.
Police say Huntsman strangled or suffocated the infants from 1996 to 2006, and that a seventh baby found in her garage was stillborn. Investigators believe Huntsman was addicted to methamphetamine and didn’t want to care for the babies.
DNA results have revealed that all seven babies were full term and that her now-estranged husband, Darren West, was the biological father of the infants.
Police believe Huntsman gave birth to the babies then killed them over the past decade and they arrested her after the grisly discovery. They found the babies following a call from Huntsman’s ex-husband about a dead infant found inside a Pleasant Grove home that Huntsman lived in until 2011. Officers arrived and found the body of a newborn infant, who appeared to be full term.
Former boyfriend Jimmy Brady, of Salt Lake City, says he was shocked to hear about what Megan Huntsman reportedly did and told a newspaper he had no idea about her past. He said he has been left depressed to hear about someone he cared about and how she killed her own children in such a gruesome manner.
Brady, who lived with the 39-year-old at a trailer home for 18 months, said he has not been able to sleep since Huntsman was arrested on suspicion of murder. He told the London Daily Mail: “I swear I had no idea, no idea what she had done in her past.”
Police searched the home after getting a search warrant and found six more babies packaged in separate cardboard boxes inside the garage.
Huntsman allegedly gave birth to the infants, then killed them over a 10 year period. Her ex-husband is believed to be the father, but investigators are still looking for information from DNA tests to provide them with additional information. Police indicate they are not currently pursuing charges against the former husband.
Neighbors said they never suspected Hunstman was pregnant and they had trusted her to look after their children over the years and indicated there were no problems.
Huntsman told police that “she either strangled or suffocated them immediately after they were born,” the Associated Press reported. “She wrapped their bodies in a towel or a shirt, put them in plastic bags and then packed them inside boxes in the garage of her home south of Salt Lake City.”
Pleasant Grove police Lt. Britt Smith said that during the interview with police, Huntsman was “unemotional and matter of fact.”