Natasha “Tasha” Mache Moses Bates was arraigned in Bradley County Criminal Court Monday.
She will be represented by 10th Judicial District Public Defender Richard Hughes and assistant PD John Fortuno, according to Hughes.
River Bates, 3, and Leland Bates, 5, reportedly died of hyperthermia, or extremely high core body temperature, after the June 28 incident.
Their mother was also indicted on two counts of aggravated child abuse/endangerment, four counts of initiation of manufacture of methamphetamine, and one count of promotion of methamphetamine manufacture. The drug charges are the result of detectives returning to the home on a search warrant.
They went to a Keith Valley Road address on July 13 under after receiving information about possible drug activity, according to Bob Gault, media relations coordinator for the Bradley County Sheriff’s Office.
Criminal Investigations Division detectives began their search for answers after officials rushed to an Armstrong Road home around 3 p.m. June 28 where they had reports of two young children unresponsive and possibly drowned.
The residence where Bates had taken the children was reportedly the home of her father. Investigators began looking into the case at Moses’ Keith Valley Road residence where the children had been outside playing, according to initial reports from the BCSO.
River Bates died at SkyRidge Medical Center a short time after the incident was reported. Leland Bates died the following day.
Early in the investigation, Dr. Jeff Miller, Bradley County medical examiner, reported the children died from hyperthermia.
The two children had elevated core body temperatures, according to Miller and other officials.
Temperatures that day reached 105 degrees or greater.
Sheriff Jim Ruth said BCSO’s detectives believed Leland and River Bates were in some type of confined space which elevated their body core temperatures.
“Through investigation and statements, investigators found reason to believe the boys died in a car,” Gault said.