Accused child-killers transferred to Monterey County

A woman and a teenage boy charged with the deaths of two children and abuse of a third child in Salinas have been transferred to Monterey County Jail and are scheduled for arraignment Friday, prosecutors said today.

Tami Joy Huntsman, 39, and Gonzalo Curiel, 17, were held outside of the county since Dec. 11, when a 9-year-old girl was found injured at an apartment in Quincy, a unincorporated community in Plumas County, Salinas police said.

The investigation surrounding the abused girl led officers to Redding in Shasta County on Dec. 13, when they found the bodies of two children inside a plastic container at a storage unit, according to police.

The bodies are believed to be 6-year-old Shaun Tara and 3-year-old Delylah Tara, who were in Huntsman’s custody, police said.

Huntsman may be the aunt of the three children, according to police.

Preliminary results from the Shasta County coroner’s office showed the two children died from ongoing physical abuse, police said.

The abuse most likely began in Salinas but it’s not clear where they died, police said.

The suspects faced charges in Plumas County that were later dismissed and they have since been placed in custody at Monterey County Jail, where they are being held without bail, prosecutors said.

They had traveled between Salinas, Redding, Quincy and Shingletown, a city in Shasta County, between Nov. 27 and Dec. 11, police said.

They will be arraigned in Monterey County Superior Court in Salinas on Friday afternoon on felony charges of murder, torture, and child abuse, prosecutors said.

Both face special circumstances allegations that can result in the death penalty for Huntsman, according to prosecutors.

Curiel, who has been charged as an adult, cannot face the death penalty because he is a juvenile, prosecutors said.