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Arkansas couple charged with homicide after 2-year-old dies

  • Deja and Justin Rollins are charged with murder in the death of their 2-year-old
  • They were already facing child abuse and neglect charges 

An Arkansas couple has been charged with murder, after they left four children in a hot car – resulting in the death of their 2-year-old.

Deja, 27, and Justin Rollins, 29, had already been facing child abuse and neglect charges for allegedly leaving their children unattended in the car outside of Arkansas Children’s Hospital on Sunday, KARK reports.

Officers said they responded to the scene after receiving reports that another of the children, an unidentified three-year-old, was brought in for urgent treatment.

During the course of their investigation, the Jacksonville police learned that the couple had four other children – ages 2, 4, 7 and 10 – but the couple allegedly refused to tell the cops where the children were.

Justin Rollins, 29
Deja Rollins, 27

Justin, left, and Deja Rollins, right, are facing murder charges for the death of their two-year-old, who was left in a hot car with his siblings on Sunday

Police later found the children inside a car in the hospital’s parking lot, and alerted hospital security – who were able to get the car open, according to Arkansas Online. 

All of those children suffered heat exhaustion, and were treated at the hospital, according to KATV.

But the next day, 2-year-old Jay’Dien Rollins was pronounced dead.

Over the course of an ensuing investigation, police also found a malnourished dog inside their Jacksonville home, and turned it over to Jacksonville Animal Services.

Their children, ages 2, 4, 7 and 10 were found inside a car in the parking lot of Arkansas Children's Hospital

Their children, ages 2, 4, 7 and 10 were found inside a car in the parking lot of Arkansas Children’s Hospital

The parents are now each facing five counts of first-degree domestic battery, five counts of neglect of a vulnerable person, five counts of endangering the welfare of a minor, one count of animal cruelty and one count of obstructing government operations.

They pleaded not guilty to the murder charges at a hearing on Tuesday – just one day after they entered a not guilty plea on the earlier charges.

Both Deja and Justin are now being held at the Pulaski County Regional Detention Facility without bond.