Coney Island deaths: 3 children dead after being found unconscious on beach in apparent drownings; mother being questioned

CONEY ISLAND, Brooklyn (WABC) — Three children have died after they were found unconscious on a Coney Island beach Monday morning, and police believe they may have been drowned by their mother.

The bodies of the 7-year-old boy, 4-year-old girl and 3-month-old boy were found around 4:40 a.m. following a nearly three-hour search that began when a relative called police, worried the woman intended to harm her children.

The children were rushed to Coney Island Hospital, where all three were pronounced dead.

The victims were later identified as 7-year-old Zachary Merdy, 4-year-old Lilana and 3-month-old Oliver Bondarev.

The 30-year-old mother, who has not yet been identified, was found about 90 minutes later soaking wet, “nearly catatonic” and barefoot, according to police, about 2 miles down the boardwalk from the section of Coney Island where she lived.

Officers first received a phone call around 1:40 a.m. from a concerned family member that someone may have harmed three small children.

When officers arrived at the home on Neptune Avenue, a man who identified himself as the father of the three children answered the door and told police he believed the mother was with the children on the boardwalk.

Police then began to canvas the boardwalk and surrounding area for any sign of the mother or children.

That’s when they received a second phone call from family members who were with the mother on the boardwalk, about two miles from where the children were found.

NYPD Press Conference:

Police said the suspect made statements to family members that she drowned her children, but she stopped talking when officer arrived and has not made any statements since.

“So far, she’s not said anything,” NYPD Chief of Department Kenneth Corey said.

She has since been taken to the hospital twice, and postpartum depression that led to postpartum psychosis is being considered as a possible motive.

Police say she is currently at NYU Langone Hospital Brooklyn.

“The mother was soaking wet,” Corey said. “Whether she had been out in the rain or whether she had been in the water is all speculative at this point. She was wet, she was barefoot, and she was not communicative to the officers.”

The mother has prior incidents of harassment and aggravated harassment that did not result in charges.

She has no prior arrests or a history of being emotionally disturbed.

Police say the actions appear to be premeditated and not something that occurred at the spur of a moment, and detectives are looking into her past and interviewing neighbors and relatives to determine what had transpired.

She has not yet been charged.

Neighbors who knew the mother said she seemed like a good mom and that the kids seemed healthy and well cared for. If there was something horribly wrong, they never would have guessed.

Allen McFarland, who coached the 7-year-old in football, described the oldest son as a happy energetic child.

He said that while it seemed like the mother was juggling a lot at once, nothing seemed out of the ordinary.

“Solid kid, really good kid, always smiling on the football field,” he said. “She definitely cared, you know what I mean? That’s why it was such a shock.”

Police are asking anyone who may have seen the mother and children at anytime last night or early this morning to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782).

ALSO READ | NYPD commissioner discusses drop in shootings, rise in other crimes like robberies

———-

* More Brooklyn news

* Send us a news tip

* Download the abc7NY app for breaking news alerts

* Follow us on YouTube

Submit a tip or story idea to Eyewitness News

Have a breaking news tip or an idea for a story we should cover? Send it to Eyewitness News using the form below. If attaching a video or photo, terms of use apply.

Copyright © 2022 WABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.



Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

MrMikeFrost

FREE
VIEW