(Click here for extended coverage on this story)
By Jon Erlichman and Aaron Rupar, Fox 2 Now
TAYLORSVILLE, Ill. — A mother has been charged with child endangerment after authorities say five children died in a fire at her home, including three who couldn’t escape.
Both of their fathers were at work during the fire and attempted to rescue the children.
The fire, which engulfed the home on Cedar Hills Drive in Taylorsville, killed 10-year-old Alexis Brown and siblings 6-year-old LeShawn Brown, 4-year-old Cramen Brown and 2-year-old Jarren Brown.
“We do believe the children got out, and they didn’t survive,” Salt Lake County Fire Marshall Jeff Sewell said.
Salt Lake County deputies arrested 31-year-old Tierra Jane Crockett in connection with the fire, charging her with child endangerment.
“We didn’t know about the arrests until being contacted by the news media,” Crockett’s mother told Fox 2 Now.
Lt. Justin Hoyal, Salt Lake County Sheriff’s Department, says officers found Crockett, and three of the children, at a Days Inn on Sunday night.
“They went to hotel and there were some phone calls to the mother, and there were circumstances that were, from our perspective, concerning,” Hoyal said.
The children’s father was at work as an officer with the Springville Police Department. Family members tell Fox 2 Now the couple had separated the year before.
Deputies confiscated Crockett’s car as they dealt with other issues from her past. Authorities found a Facebook conversation between Crockett and her sister-in-law about not sleeping in the same bed.
The messages then allegedly went downhill, with Crockett apparently encouraging her sister-in-law to blame the man for the divorce.
Crockett’s father was en route to Utah from home in Illinois, to attend his grandchildren’s funeral on Wednesday.