Three young children whose bodies were found washed up on the beach in Brooklyn’s Coney Island were apparently brutally murdered by their own mother!
The woman, who was found soaking wet and barefoot about 90 minutes before the bodies of her three young children were discovered on the beach near the Coney Island boardwalk, has thus far refused to speak with investigators.
The bodies of three children, a three-month-old girl, a four-year-old girl, and a seven-year-old boy, were found lying in the surf near the famous boardwalk at approximately 4:42 a.m. on Sept. 12, New York Police Department (NYPD) Chief of Department Kenneth Corey told reporters.
The incident began when NYPD officers responded to a call to the apartment at 3325 Neptune Avenue after a family member at a different location called 911 to report she was worried that the three children may have been harmed by their mother, according to Chief Corey.
Officers arrived at the apartment at approximately 1:40 a.m., but they could not get anyone to come to the door, Chief Corey said.
Police said the door to the apartment had been left unlocked.
The father of one of the children went to the apartment and approached the officers, explaining he was also concerned that the kids were in danger, according to the chief.
The father said he believed the woman and the three children were on the Coney Island boardwalk.
A large-scale search for the children and their mother was immediately launched, Chief Corey said.
“That involved canvasing the boardwalk, the beach, the streets of Coney Island, Coney Island Hospital, and [the woman’s] own apartment,” the chief told reporters.
The NYPD received another 911 call approximately 90 minutes later, directing them to the area of Brighton 6th Street and Riegelmann Boardwalk.
“At that location, the officers found a 30-year-old female believed to be the mother of the three children,” Chief Corey said. “She was accompanied by other family members, but not the three children.”
The chief said the woman, who sources said was wet, barefoot, and wearing a robe, refused to speak to police, but she allegedly told a family member that she had killed the three children, the New York Post reported.
“So far, she has not said anything,” Chief Corey told reporters.
Once the dripping wet woman was found, the frantic search for the missing kids intensified, with aviation and boat units contributing to the effort.
Police also focused their attention on the shoreline.
They ultimately located the children lying at the water’s edge at West 35th Street and “immediately initiated lifesaving measures, including CPR,” Chief Corey said.
“They were rushed to Coney Island Hospital, where they were regrettably pronounced deceased,” he told reporters gathered at the press conference.
Chief Corey said there was no known prior history of abuse or neglect involving the woman or her children.
Chief Corey said the children’s mother was taken in for questioning, but that she had not been charged with any crimes prior to the press conference.
Family members allegedly said she had a history of mental health issues and that she was possibly under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
On the day the bodies were found, neither the names of the children nor the mother were disclosed; however, CNN reported on Wednesday that the mother, Erin Merdy, has been arrested and charged with the children’s deaths.
She has been charged with three counts of second-degree murder, three counts of depraved indifference to human life, and three counts of murder with the victims under 11 years old, an official spokesman for the NYPD said.
The children died by drowning early Monday, and their deaths are considered homicides, the New York City Office of the Chief Medical Examiner said.
At first, Merry refused to speak to police, but upon being hospitalized and subjected to further questioning, she told police she had been “dreaming of walking the kids in the water,” according to the law enforcement official.
Merry was processed Wednesday and remains in a hospital for further psychological evaluation, the official said.