Ohio mother confesses to killing three young sons over past year: police

Reuters News
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Posted: Aug 18, 2015 11:59 PM

(Reuters) - An Ohio woman has confessed to killing her three young sons - two infants and a 4-year-old - over the past year, police said on Tuesday.

Brittany Pilkington, of Bellefontaine, about 160 miles (260 km) southwest of Cleveland, was arrested on three counts of murder and was being held at the Logan County jail, police said.

Pilkington, who confessed to killing her boys after questioning, told investigators she had murdered them because their father, Joseph Pilkington, was not paying enough attention to their daughter, the Columbus Dispatch newspaper reported.

Police did not confirm Brittany Pilkington's age but the Dispatch reported she is 23.

Pilkington called 911 early on Tuesday to report that her 3-month-old son, Noah, was not breathing, Bellefontaine police said in a news release. The child was unresponsive and sent to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead, police said.

It was the third time in 13 months they had been sent to the same address under similar circumstances, so authorities "began a tedious investigation into Noah's death," the release said.

Police went to the residence in July 2014 after Joseph Pilkington returned home from work and reported that he had found his 3-month-old son, Niall, dead. The cause of death was undetermined due to lack of evidence at the scene, police said.

Their 4-year-old son Gavin was then found dead at home in April this year, authorities said. That case is still open.

Police spent Tuesday interviewing Brittany Pilkington, who confessed that she intentionally killed all three of her sons, police said in the news release.

According to the Columbus Dispatch, Pilkington told prosecutors she suffocated her boys with blankets because her husband was paying more attention to them than the couple's 3-year-old daughter.

"The tragic deaths of Niall, Gavin and Noah leave a pit in our stomachs today,” Bellefontaine Police Chief Brandon Standley said in a statement.

Pilkington would be arraigned in coming days. It was unclear if she would hire a private attorney or be assigned a public defender. The Pilkington residence could not be reached by phone for comment on Tuesday.

A coroner would determine the cause of the children's deaths, police said.

(Reporting by Victoria Cavaliere in Los Angeles)