Authorities: Texas mom left 2 kids in hot car as punishment

Cynthia Marie Randolph 25

The pair were pronounced dead around half-an-hour after authorities were notified.

The Texan woman, Cynthia Marie Randolph, 24, initially told investigators her two-year-old daughter and 16-month-old son locked themselves in the vehicle on May 26.

Randolph faces two first-degree felony counts of injury to a child causing serious bodily injury.

Online jail records don't list an attorney for her. Her bond has not been set.

She told them she closed the auto door when the two-year-old refused to come out, and went back inside her home to smoke marijuana and nap for two to three hours.

Randolph told investigators that she believed the toddlers could get out of the vehicle.

At the time Randolph said the kids were exposed to the extreme temperatures in the auto for "no more than an hour".

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But after being questioned again by investigators, Randolph told them several different versions of the events that transpired on May 26.

In 2017 alone, 13 children have died from being locked inside cars and suffering heat stroke, according to San Jose State University professor Jan Null. Of those, three have been in North Texas, including the two Friday in Parker County. Chief Jeff Gibson said they are not calling Kaytlynn's case a murder investigation because the medical examiner has not released an official cause of death.

A 16-month-old boy was also left in the vehicle, which likely reached a temperature of nearly 100 degrees while both children were inside.

On Friday, the Texas Rangers and a Dallas-based senior federal special agent conducted a final interview with Randolph, where she implicated herself in her children's deaths. She looked into the room they had been playing and noticed they were "gone". She said the two children got in the auto on their own and locked themselves in.

Sheriff's deputies on the scene asked Randolph how long the children had been inside the vehicle.

She said she later broke the auto window to make it look like an accident, the sheriff's office said.

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