Jensen makes first court appearance on homicide charges

Heather Jensen

Five days after leaving a Florida jail, former Palisade resident Heather Jensen appeared Monday afternoon via closed circuit television in a Mesa County courtroom.

Jensen, 24, was arrested Jan. 16 at her mother’s home in North Fort Myers, Fla., on suspicion of two counts of criminally negligent child abuse resulting in death, two counts of criminally negligent homicide, and false reporting to law enforcement. The arrest was connected to a Nov. 27 incident on Grand Mesa where Jensen allegedly left her sons William, 2, and Tyler, 4, in her SUV with the heat turned on for some 90 minutes. Both boys later died of complications related to hyperthermia, according to the Mesa County Coroner’s Office.

Jensen propped her right elbow on a lectern and leaned her head against her right hand throughout her brief appearance, occasionally drumming the fingers on her left hand on the side of the lectern as Mesa County Judge Gretchen Larson listed the charges. Her only words to the judge were, “Yes, ma’am,” when asked if she understood.

Larson kept bond at $150,000 cash/surety and set Jensen’s next court date for 8:15 a.m. Thursday before Judge Valerie Robison. The boys’ funeral is planned the same day.


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