A Phoenix mother was arrested this morning on suspicion of murder after admitting to killing her three children, including an infant and two toddlers, who were found dead inside the family’s home Monday.
The Phoenix Police Department announced on Tuesday the 22-year-old woman is now in custody and will be booked later today on three counts of first- degree murder.
The parents of the three children who all live at a house in the 2500 block of East Vineyard Road near 24th Street in Phoenix called police at around 7.30pm on Monday to report an emergency.
Responding officers found a seven-month-old girl, two-year-old girl and three-year-old boy in the living room, authorities said.
The children were unresponsive and were pronounced dead after officers administered CPR and firefighters provided first aid.
There was no obvious trauma to the children, and the mother claimed illness may have been a factor because the youngsters had been sick earlier in the night, police initially said.
Reports from Phoenix Fire officials initially described the incident as a drowning, but they later retracted that statement, according to Fox 10 Phoenix.
According to reports, officers first received an ‘unknown trouble call’ from one of the parents and when police arrived at the home, they were greeted by three adults.
Police interviewed the mother, the children’s 30-year-old father and another relative, aged 49, according to Phoenix police.
The family moved to Arizona over the summer from Oklahoma.
A neighbor told local reporters he went outside after hearing a helicopter above the residential area, adding he was scared for his own family’s safety.
David Ware said the property where the children were found included a landscaping business or plant nursery, with trucks often coming in and out.
He told AZ Central: ‘I’ve always just assumed it was an active business. I’ve never seen children on the property.’
Ware said that ‘cops went frantic’ at the scene, adding: ‘I freak out, you panic. You want to make sure there’s not a present danger to your children.’
Sgt. Mercedes Fortune of the Phoenix Police Department described the scene that first responders found as ‘very difficult’.
First responders who tried to save the children’s lives were sent home early after the traumatic event.
The medical examiner will determine the cause of death.