Chandler mother pleads to drowning her baby in tub SanTan Sun News

Chandler mother pleads to drowning her baby in tub

December 7th, 2020 Editorial Staff
Chandler mother pleads to drowning her baby in tub
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SANTAN SUN NEWS STAFF

A Chandler mother has pleaded guilty to drowning her infant son in a bathtub.

Jenna Folwell, 21, pleaded guilty last month in Superior Court to the second-degree murder of her son, Rainer, whose body was found stuffed in a duffle bag and hidden inside a cabinet of the defendant’s Chandler apartment.

According to Folwell’s plea agreement, the defendant has agreed to serve at least 14 years in the prison. The aggravated maximum prison sentence for second-degree murder is 25 years.

As part of the plea deal, prosecutors dismissed other criminal charges, including child abuse and false reporting to law enforcement.

Chandler Police arrested Folwell in October 2018 after she confessed to harming her month-old son.

“Folwell admitted to getting into the bathtub with her son and then letting him go,’’ Chandler investigators wrote in court documents. “Jenna said she settled on this way because she did not want to hear her baby cry.’’

Folwell initially told Chandler Police her son was abducted by an unknown man at a park near Dobson and Warner roads.

She claimed the man approached her from behind and covered her face with a plastic bag, warning her he’d kill Rainer if she removed the covering.

Chandler investigators started searching for Folwell’s missing baby and obtained permission from her father to search the family’s apartment. Rainer was found wrapped in wet blankets inside a duffle bag.

Folwell then changed her story, claiming Rainer had accidentally drowned after she fainted in the bathtub and she conjured up the kidnapping ploy to protect herself.

Court records show Folwell changed her story again after Chandler Police confronted the defendant with incriminating evidence recovered from her cell phone.

Before Rainer’s death, Folwell made numerous searches on her phone for “ways to die instantly” and “missing baby cases.” Officers reviewed more than 100 searches for information on why parents kill children and how long it takes for babies to drown.

Folwell admitted to intentionally placing her son in the bathtub and letting him go for up to a minute.

She told investigators she immediately regretted her decision and attempted to revive the baby by performing CPR.

At the time of her arrest, Chandler Police said Folwell did not offer a motive for why she let her son drown.

Eric Canku Jr., the child’s father, told the press he was willing to take care of Rainer if Folwell had told him she couldn’t handle motherhood.

Folwell had no criminal history prior to her arrest. She will be formally sentenced Dec. 14.

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