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Bodies of 2 children recovered from river; mom arrested

By the CNN Wire Staff
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Toddlers' bodies found in submerged car
  • Sheriff identifies arrested woman as 29-year-old Shaquan Duley
  • Incident has "stench of foul play," Orangeburg County sheriff says
  • Bodies of two children recovered from Edisto River in South Carolina
  • They were trapped in a submerged car; their mother has been arrested

See local coverage from CNN affiliate WISTV in South Carolina.

(CNN) -- The bodies of two children trapped inside a car submerged in the Edisto River in South Carolina have been recovered, and their mother has been arrested, authorities said Monday.

State troopers responded to a report of a car accident early Monday and found a Chrysler sedan in the water near a boat landing in Orangeburg County. Divers discovered the bodies of the two boys, ages 1 and 2, which were taken from the car and sent to the county coroner for autopsies, authorities said.

Their mother is 29-year-old Shaquan Duley, Sheriff Larry Williams told HLN's Nancy Grace. She was arrested and charged with leaving the scene of an accident.

Williams said the boys' mother walked almost a mile before calling for help. While the woman described the incident as an accident, Williams told CNN that "it has a stench of foul play."

It wasn't immediately known whether Duley had retained an attorney.

Williams said he couldn't confirm reports that the key was still in the car's ignition, but he said the car apparently was in neutral. He added Duley didn't appear wet, saying, "She didn't have any evidence that she had been submerged in the water."

Video: Car sinks with tots inside, mom arrested

The car went off a boat ramp that is about 10 yards off the roadway shoulder and sits at a 90-degree angle.

"She said she was going down road and lost control of vehicle and happened to be at juncture where boat ramp was," Williams told Grace. However, he added, "There's no evidence that she ran off the road at any time."

The woman says she flagged a motorist down to use a cell phone to call in the incident, Williams said. Police are trying to track down that individual.

Duley was questioned "on and off" Monday afternoon and expected to be booked at the jail sometime in the evening, the sheriff said earlier in the day.

The boys' father, who doesn't live at the same residence as the children, has been interviewed by investigators, Williams said. The sheriff said he didn't know the father's whereabouts at the time of the incident.

Duley has a third child, a 5-year-old daughter, who was at the home of her maternal grandmother where they all lived, he said.

HLN's Natisha Lance contributed to this report.