The Latest: Suspect's sister: Her life revolved around sons

AP News
|
Posted: Jun 03, 2016 4:32 PM
The Latest: Suspect's sister: Her life revolved around sons

PHOENIX (AP) — The Latest on the killings of three young Phoenix boys (all times local):

1:30 p.m.

The sister of an Arizona woman suspected of fatally stabbing her three young sons says she saw no signs that her sibling was troubled.

Vonitica (Von-Teesh-AH) Nickerson says the three boys were the center of the life of her younger sister, 29-year-old Octavia Renee Rogers.

The bodies of the three boys — ages 2 months old and 5 and 8 years old — were discovered in a closet at their Phoenix home.

Child welfare officials had prior contacts with the family but found no legal grounds to take the children into emergency care.

Nickerson says Rogers was happy to have recently moved back to Phoenix after spending about a year and a half in Virginia.

___

12:40 p.m.

An Arizona woman suspected of fatally stabbing her three young sons and badly wounding herself has led a tumultuous life over the past decade.

She faced domestic disputes with family members, inquiries from child-welfare investigators, and she tried to collect child support from the fathers of two of the three boys.

Police haven't yet revealed her identity as she recovers from her injuries at a hospital.

But court records in child support cases identify 29-year-old Octavia Renee Rogers as the mother of two of the slain children.

The bodies of the three boys — ages 2 months old and 5 and 8 years old — were discovered in a closet at their Phoenix home. The youngest boy's body was found in a suitcase.

Police have said the mother will face charges.

___

9:20 a.m.

Arizona child welfare officials had prior contacts with the family of three young boys found stabbed to death in their home.

The boys' 29-year-old mother is hospitalized with self-inflicted stab wounds. Police say the Phoenix woman is the primary suspect and will face charges.

The state Department of Child Safety says investigators couldn't locate the family in 2010 to check reports of a boy with a small abrasion on his forehead.

The department says it also investigated cases in 2011 and 2016 involving marijuana allegations in which it found no legal grounds to take the children into emergency care. One allegation was substantiated, and the other was not.

Director Greg McKay says the department takes seriously its responsibility to protect children but cannot predict the future, including "awful things" that people can do.

___

1:15 a.m.

The Phoenix mother had been transported to the hospital covered in blood with stab wounds to her neck and abdomen when police officers searching her house opened a closet to a grim discovery.

Inside, officers found the bodies of her three young sons.

Police discovered the dead boys — ages 2 months old and 5 and 8 years old — in a closet full of miscellaneous items. Phoenix police Sgt. Trent Crump said the youngest boy's body was in a suitcase.

Crump said the children appeared to have been stabbed to death and "parts of their bodies were dismembered."

The 29-year-old mother is in the hospital in critical condition with self-inflicted stab wounds. Police say she is the primary suspect and will face charges.