published Tuesday, November 20th, 2012

Trial date set for mother in Cleveland heat deaths

  • photo
    Tasha Bates, who is charged in the deaths of her 3- and 5-year-old sons last year, leaves court in Bradley County earlier this year. Bates will be in court again today for motions in her ongoing criminal case.
    Photo by Dan Henry /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

A trial date has been set for the Cleveland, Tenn. woman accused in the summer heat deaths of her two young boys.

Tasha Bates, 26, is set to stand trial Aug. 27, 2013, for murder charges in the deaths Leland, 3, and River, 5, who died of heat stroke June 28.

Bates was arrested two weeks later and remains incarcerated in the Bradley County Jail.

She has maintained she found the boys unconscious during the 101-degree afternoon after she left them outside unattended on a Slip 'n' Slide water toy for 45 minutes.

But investigators have claimed the boys died in a car outside Bates' house in rural Bradley County. She has also been charged with several methamphetamine-related offenses after investigators say they found drug-making materials in her home.

Final autopsy results showed boys' core body temperatures climbed to at least 109 and 103 degrees before they died, according to measurements taken after they were rushed to the hospital.

Criminal Court Judge Amy Reedy also set April 19 for motions and the first hearing for discovery in March.

For more details, read Wednesday’s Times Free Press.

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