When the reporter asked Carrillo if she had been diagnosed with mental illness, she said she had dealt with depression and anxiety her whole life who had also been diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder. Denton claimed she refused to take her prescribed medication and instead “heavily self medicated” with marijuana to cope with pain until she stopped in February.
She claimed Denton was trying to convince the courts she was mentally ill so he could have the children taken away from her.
“Of course he is going to say I am crazy, but I am not crazy,” she said in the interview.
She asked the reporter if she was crazy, then why would Denton leave her alone with the kids all of the time. But in court papers, Denton said he had to quit his job in December 2019 to stay home with the children after Carrillo had made statements she wanted to kill herself and said “I wish I never had kids.”
The children were found by their grandmother in their apartment in the 8000 block of Reseda Boulevard at about 9:30 a.m. on April 10, according to LAPD. LA Fire Department pronounced all three children dead at the scene. The cause of death is still under investigation.
A little over an hour later, LAPD said it received a report Carrillo was involved in a carjacking in the Bakersfield area and was driving a stolen Toyota pickup. Carrillo had crashed her car on Highway 65 north of Bakersfield at about 11 a.m., according to a spokesperson for the Kern County Sheriff’s Department. In the interview with KGET-TV, Carrillo said the crash was her second attempt to commit suicide that day. When a good Samaritan stopped to help her, she carjacked the pickup instead.
Carrillo continued driving north on Highway 65 and eventually made her way to Tulare County where she was arrested in Ponderosa, a mountain community located 43 miles east of Porterville, around 1 p.m.
“I tried to kill myself [at the apartment] first and it wasn’t working, so I decided to drive to the top of the national forest and basically go off [a cliff],” she said.
On March 26, Carrillo and Denton appeared before Judge Gary Johnson at the South County Justice Center in Porterville and agreed on a shared custody, with the children alternating weekends beginning March 28.
Carrillo has not yet been to court for the murder charges but did plea not guilty to one count of carjacking, one count of attempted carjacking and two counts of auto theft during an arraignment in Kern County Superior Court on April 14, the same day she was due back in court for a custody hearing in Tulare County. She is being held in Kern County Jail on a $2 million bail over concerns as a public safety risk and flight risk, according to the Kern County DA’s office.
“I miss my kids,” she said. “I think about them every day. The only thing I do know is that I am probably going to be in jail for the rest of my life.”