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Pratt mom faces 2 felony counts for fire that killed her 23-month-old twin sons


PRATT, Kansas — A south-central Kansas woman faces two felony counts in connection with a house fire that killed her 23-month-old twin sons.

Destry Ibarra has been charged with two counts of aggravated endangering a child for the fire that killed her sons, Jayce and Jasper, on Dec. 23, Pratt County Attorney Ken Van Blaricum said Friday.

Ibarra was arrested Thursday and released on a $15,000 bond, Van Blaricum said. He said the investigation is ongoing. Fire investigators have determined the accidental fire resulted from careless cooking methods that caused a grease fire in the kitchen.

The twins died in the house fire. Firefighters found Destry Ibarra on the porch roof. The children's father, Ramon Ibarra, was away at the time.

A phone listing under Destry Ibarra's name rang unanswered Friday, and Van Blaricum said it was unclear if she has a lawyer. He said her first court appearance is scheduled for May 7.

The boys' paternal aunt, Sara Lopez, told The Wichita Eagle ( ) she anonymously reported concerns about the twins' care to a state child abuse and neglect hotline months before the fire. Lopez said her concerns about the boys included a filthy house, a lack of utilities and a possible lack of nutrition.

Lopez said the boys should have been removed from their home before the fire.

"The system failed," said Lopez, 42, of Pratt.

Theresa Freed, spokeswoman for the Kansas Department for Children and Families, told The Associated Press on Friday that DCF had multiple contacts with the family from 2011 and responded to a report in July 2013.

During the 2013 visit, the home was found to be clean and the children were well cared for, Freed said. She said the children's father was also interviewed and didn't express concern about the mother or her ability to take of the children.

"We offered services to help the family, and those were declined," she said. Freed said since that visit there were no other reports about child welfare concerns for the family.

Information from: The Wichita (Kan.) Eagle,

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