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Somerset County Grand Jury to Hear Case of Skillman Mother Charged with Killing Her Children

By Barbara A. Preston | January 18, 2022

A Skillman mother charged with murdering her two children will be referred to a Somerset County grand jury. Her last court hearing was in Superior Court before Judge Peter Tober on December 20.

Police had arrested Yuhwei Chou, 36, of Skillman on November 9 and charged her with two counts of 1st degree murder in the deaths of her children: Samantha Ross, 7, and Paul Ross, 11 months of age. She allegedly suffocated them in the backseat of her car while parked along a road in Hillsborough.

Chou has been lodged in the Somerset County Jail in Somerville. She was denied bail.

Yuhwei Chou at Somerset County Jail
Yuhwei Chou at Somerset County Jail

The grand jury is expected to decide whether Chou should be indicted. When indicted, a person is given formal notice that it is believed that they committed a crime. The grand jury listens to the prosecutor and witnesses, and then votes in secret on whether they believe that enough evidence exists to charge the person with a crime. If indicted, the next court appearance would be an arraignment, the judge said.

An arraignment is a court proceeding at which a criminal defendant is formally advised of the charges against him and asked to enter a plea to the charges.

According to the Somerset County Complaint Warrant, obtained by The Montgomery News, Chou voluntarily told the court that she did purposely and knowingly cause the death of her children by duct taping their entire faces and holding her hand over their mouths until they died.

A witness observed a gray Toyota Corolla bearing New Jersey license plates in a ditch on Mountainview Road in Hillsborough on November 9. The witness spoke with the driver, later identified as Chou, and saw that her hands were zip tied to the steering wheel, and her children were in child seats in the rear of the vehicle with their faces duct taped and hands zip tied, according to the Affidavit of Probable Cause, also obtained by The Montgomery News.

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The witness told another witness to call 911. When police arrived, Chou told them she zip tied herself to the steering wheel and duct taped herself. She told police her children were dead.

In a voluntary post-Miranda taped statement, Chou stated that she “killed both of her children” on November 8 and that she had been planning the two murders for about one week.

Chou stated in the affidavit that she “first drove to Wawa for lunch and then to True Value, where she purchased duct tape and zip ties.”

Chou said she then drove to Mountainview Road and parked in a hunting area with a dirt driveway on the side of the road. She then “got into the backseat and zip tied” her daughter’s hands and duct taped her face, along with her son’s face. She said she used her hands to suffocate both victims until they were dead. ■

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