Wisconsin man to face charges in killing of three daughters

Reuters News
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Posted: Jul 11, 2012 6:07 PM
Wisconsin man to face charges in killing of three daughters

By Brendan O'Brien

MILWAUKEE (Reuters) - A Wisconsin man suspected of killing his three daughters while visiting them at his ex-wife's home has been taken into custody and is expected to be charged with homicide, authorities said on Wednesday.

Aaron Schaffhausen, 34, is being held in the St. Croix County Jail after police on Tuesday afternoon discovered the bodies of his daughters, ages 5, 8 and 11, at their house in River Falls, a small town about an hour east of Minneapolis.

The children had been with a babysitter until Schaffhausen, who lives in Minot, North Dakota, arrived at the home to visit them. Later, concerned about the safety of her children, the girls' mother called the police. She and Schaffhausen divorced earlier this year, according the court records.

When officers entered the house, which smelled of gas, they discovered the deceased children. A gas fire place had been turned on, authorities said, and flammable liquids were found in the basement.

A cause of death has not yet been released.

Schaffhausen turned himself in to police about an hour after the girls' bodies were found. He is expected to be arraigned on Thursday.

Police records indicate Schaffhausen allegedly threatened to harm at least one of the children in March. Police also said a domestic incident occurred at the house in 2009.

(Editing by Paul Thomasch and Todd Eastham)