Published: Thu, January 23, 2020
Global News | By Blake Casey

Phoenix woman arrested in murders of three young children

Phoenix woman arrested in murders of three young children

The 22-year-old mother, Rachel Henry, "has admitted to harming her three children", which led to their deaths, police Sgt. Mercedes Fortune told reporters outside the home on a block with several weathered wooden houses and an old mobile home in a once rural area of southern Phoenix.

An arrest report states the mother said she smothered the 1-year-old, Mireya, first, AZCentral.com said. Henry first told officers the children had been home sick all day but later admitted to killing them as questioning continued.

Authorities said the possible drug abuse likely occurred in Oklahoma because the Arizona Department of Child Safety said it had no previous contacts with Henry.

Investigators conducted interviews with Henry, her husband, 30, and the 49-year-old relative, who called police.

She recounted smothering the 3-year-old second, straddling him on the ground of a bedroom because she danced into the youngster and he attempted scratching and scratching her till he died, according to the probable cause statement.

Rachel Henry, 22, has been charged with three counts of first-degree murder.

"This is one of the most hard calls that officers and fire respond to, ones dealing with young ones who have lost their lives", Phoenix Police Sgt. Mercedes Fortune said.

"Her little boy was super sweet", said a high school friend of Henry's who asked not to be identified.

"Rachel described singing to the three-year-old male as he [scratched] her chest and [pinched] her while she placed her hand over his nose/mouth", the affidavit stated.

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She was ordered held on a secured bond of $3 million.

"Rachel placed all of the children in a position on the living room couch as if they were napping", police wrote.

Police say when officers arrived, they were met by three adults.

The Phoenix Fire Department received a call from the home regarding a drowning of the three children, spokesperson Rob McDade told the Associated Press.

After she killed the two oldest children, she fed the 7-month-old a bottle and smothered her while she slept, the statement says.

"I don't know how I will be able to get any money", Henry said, noting that she doesn't have a job.

The family had recently moved from Oklahoma. I've never seen children on the property'.

"She just never really showed emotion, never really cared about anything", the woman said.

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