Two Murray County residents facing separate charges for child neglect

Sierra Rains

Two Murray County residents are facing separate felony charges for child neglect stemming from incidents involving children under the age of five.

On June 4, Davis police reportedly responded to an incident in which two individuals had engaged in an altercation, resulting in a car crash at a local business.

One of the individuals involved, 36-year-old Jason James Nichols, had been arrested about a week prior for domestic assault and battery in the presence of a child and child abuse.

Davis Police Department Chief Danny Cooper said Nichols had allegedly assaulted the victim during the previous incident. “He supposedly stabbed her in the leg the week before and then she was letting him be around the kid again when they got into it at the store here in town,” he said.

According to Murray County court documents, 38-year-old Cheyenne Digby of Sulphur was driving with a four-year-old child sitting unrestrained in the front seat of the vehicle. Nichols was allegedly hanging in the door opening of the vehicle and began tugging and jerking at the steering wheel.

This reportedly caused the vehicle to maneuver over a curb near the store in Davis and to almost strike a tree.

Charges for child neglect were filed against Digby on June 10 for allegedly exposing the child to “illegal activity” after a “prior, serious incident of domestic violence,” according to court documents.

Two counts of child neglect were filed against another Murray County resident the same day for a separate incident. Cooper said Davis police reportedly discovered drugs in the possession of 24-year-old Lauren Emberton of Davis, while two children were in her vehicle on May 6.

According to Murray County court documents, Emberton is accused of exposing the children, one of which was one month old, to illegal drugs, including methamphetamine and opiates. The amount of each substance is undisclosed at this time.

An initial court appearance is scheduled for Emberton on June 17. Digby was scheduled to appear in court on June 10, according to court records. Child neglect is punishable by up to life imprisonment or a fine of no less than $500.