Mother accused of slitting kids' throats, setting home ablaze

Reuters News
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Posted: Mar 19, 2012 1:43 PM
Mother accused of slitting kids' throats, setting home ablaze

By Daniel Lovering

CAMBRIDGE, Massachusetts (Reuters) - A mother who turned up at a police station covered in blood and lighter fluid was under arrest on Monday, accused of slitting the throats of her two children and setting their Salem, Massachusetts, apartment ablaze, authorities said.

The critically injured girl, age 3, and boy, age 8, were rushed to Boston Children's Hospital on Sunday night, where they underwent surgery, said Carrie Kimball Monahan, a spokeswoman for Essex District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett.

Firefighters discovered the children after they responded to the fire at 12 Pope Street in Salem at 9:15 p.m. on Sunday, Kimball Monahan said.

Their mother, Tanicia Goodwin, 25, had fled the apartment with her daughter, whose neck was lacerated from one side to the other, Kimball Monahan said. Goodwin had a superficial cut on her neck, she said.

Firefighters entered the apartment and located the woman's son, whose neck was cut more deeply, she said. The boy was still conscious and nodded when asked whether his mother had cut him, according to Kimball Monahan.

The interior doorknob of the apartment had been removed.

Goodwin later walked into the Salem Police Department, smashed a window, and turned herself in, the spokeswoman said. Her clothes were covered with blood and lighter fluid, and she agreed to be questioned, Kimball Monahan said.

On Monday, Goodwin was arraigned at Salem District Court on two counts of armed assault with intent to murder, two counts of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, and arson, she said.

Goodwin, whose attorney did not immediately respond to a phone message seeking comment, was being held without bail pending a hearing on March 26.

A hospital spokeswoman declined to comment on the children's condition on Monday.

(Editing By Barbara Goldberg)