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Sun Cha Warhola appears in court Feb. 24, 2020 (Photo: Derek Petersen)
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Trial Set For Woman Accused Of Strangling Her Children To Death

LAYTON, Utah – A woman accused of strangling her children to death nine years ago appeared before a judge at the Davis County District Court on Monday.

Sun Cha Warhola, 53, was found competent to stand trial in May 2019. In Monday’s proceedings, her attorneys requested her trial be scheduled for January  2021.

Warhola didn’t speak during the pre-trial conference hearing.

Police said Warhola strangled her two children – 8-year-old James and 7-year-old Jean – inside their Layton home in September 2010 while the kids’ father wasn’t home. According to court documents, the children had defensive wounds on their arms and legs, and their mother had injuries that were consistent with a struggle.

Warhola’s attorneys in 2011 argued she likely suffered from a severe mental illness, and she was found not competent for trial. She has been at the Utah State Hospital since then.

The father, Ken Warhola, was also in the courtroom Monday. When asked about his thoughts for a trial next year, he responded, “It’s already been nine plus years.”

“That’s the exact moment in their life when they were starting to be their own lives, and they were good kids,” Ken Warhola said in an exclusive interview with KSL ahead of Monday’s hearing. “James had many interests – a really good sense of humor. Jean Marie was just an all-around good person, well liked, thoughtful.”

“These are two really good people,” he added.

Ken Warhola said he hopes people will remember his kids that way.

The court scheduled the trail for Jan. 25 – 29, 2021, at Layton’s Second District Courthouse. A status conference is scheduled for April 13.

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