Fairbanks woman charged with the murder of her two children

A Fairbanks woman is charged with killing her two infant children. Fairbanks Police report that 23-year-old Stephany LaFountain faces first and second degree murder charges in the suffocation deaths of a four-month-old in 2015, and a 13-month-old last year.

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Speaking at a press conference on Thursday, Fairbanks Police Chief Eric Jewkes says the child murders leave law enforcement at a loss for words.

”How do we even imagine that? How do we as a justice system? How do we make this right? Unfortunately, there’s just nothing we can do to make everything right, to make it better,” Jewkes said.

Police say the 13-month-old was brought to the hospital not breathing on November 20th, 2017. That resulted in police looking into the September 2015 death of LaFountain’s four-month-old, who died of similar symptoms.

Police say their investigation found that LaFountain had done internet searches for “ways to suffocate” and other topics that indicated she was researching how to kill. Chief Jewkes noted extensive police work that went into the case.

”There’s the work you see and there’s the work you don’t see. And this is a prime example of the work that you don’t see,” Jewkes said. “Our detectives have been working this case for nine months, thousands of hours. And we’ve estimated that if we printed this report out, it would be over 100,000 pages. That’s the amount of work that goes into a case like this that no one sees, that we don’t talk about.”

Jewkes also credited the victim’s family for their help with the investigation.

”They trusted us. They stuck with us,” Jewkes said. “And they allowed us to work this case, entrusted that we would bring this to where it is now. and we were able to do it. They shouldered the grieving process alone and we’re gonna bring this out to light and hopefully bring some closure to them.”

Stephany LaFountain was arrested yesterday, and arraigned on murder charges today.

Dan Bross is a reporter at KUAC in Fairbanks.

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