Utah Mother Who Killed Six Newborns Was Addicted to Meth

By Shawn Dwyer 07/09/14

Megan Huntsman told police that she just didn't want the responsibility.

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A Utah woman charged with killing several newborns and storing their bodies in a garage said that she did not want the responsibility of taking care of them, according to police.

Megan Huntsman, 39, of Pleasant Grove, Utah, allegedly killed at least six infants through suffocation or strangulation from 1996 to 2006. Their bodies were discovered by Huntsman's estranged husband, Darren West, who found one of the infants inside a small white box covered in electrician's tape while cleaning the garage in April.

Police found six other infants wrapped in shirts or towels and encased in individual boxes. A seventh infant was also found, but police believe that one was stillborn.

Though authorities initially declined to reveal a motivation behind the disturbing crime, police have now stated that Huntsman had been addicted to methamphetamine throughout her pregnancies. She allegedly told them that she was unconcerned about the potential health problems that the infants might have developed by her meth use and that she simply didn't want to care for them.

"It was completely selfish. She was high on drugs and didn't want the babies, or the responsibility," said Pleasant Grove Police Capt. Mike Roberts. "That was her priority at the time."

While it remains uncertain how West remained oblivious to the numerous pregnancies and births despite living with Huntsman during that period, he is currently not considered a suspect in their deaths. But according to DNA testing, West was the biological father of all seven babies—five girls and two boys—and was recently released from prison after serving eight years for cooking meth.

Huntsman was arrested in April and has been charged with six counts of premeditated murder. She is being held on a $6 million bond and is expected to appear in a Provo court on July 21.

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Shawn Dwyer is a writer, editor and content producer living in Los Angeles. You can find him on Linkedin.