The Whittier Daily News, Calif.
After police made the grisly Mother’s Day discovery of the bodies of three children inside a West Hills home, their mother and a 16-year-old were in jail accused of murder.
The Los Angeles Police Department said in a statement Monday that Angela Dawn Flores, 38, admitted to killing her children with the 16-year-old’s help inside the house in the 22500 block of Victory Boulevard.
Flores was being held on $6 million bail on three murder charges, said Officer Drake Madison, an LAPD spokesman. The teen was in custody without bail in Sylmar Juvenile Hall, arrested on suspicion of one murder charge.
Police had not publicly identified the teen or said if he is a son of Flores.
It’s not clear how the children died. Police had not released any other information about their deaths. And none were identified by name Monday.
Neighbors said the mother was acting erratically before the bodies were found. Late Saturday night, Flores was allegedly found with a candle and a Bible in a neighbor’s backyard and taken away by paramedics.
The next morning at around 7:40 a.m., officers responded to a 911 call about an assault with a deadly weapon at the home, LAPD said in the statement.
When they got there, the officers found the bodies of a 12-year-old girl and two other children about 8 years old, LAPD said in a statement. The coroner said the two younger children were boys.
The neighborhood where the killings occurred sits on the border of West Hills and Woodland Hills, separated by busy Victory Boulevard.
The home — like most others in this area, ranch style with a large lot — is in West Hills, on the north side of the street.
The garden out front is immaculate. Bushes full of flowers, neatly trimmed grass and a line of towering palm trees that provides shade for a small bench, all nestled around a semicircular driveway.
Monday morning, there were only a few hints of horror.
Mourners left several trinkets behind: Three small stuffed bears, three small stones and three candles in front of one entrance.
At least three children’s bicycles were piled on top of one another near a gate door to the backyard.
The mother had been heard shouting, “I’m being abused by my family!” Saturday at about 10:30 p.m., said Priscila Canales, 39, who lives two doors down.
Later, Flores apparently went into a neighboring backyard, lit a candle and clutched a Bible and police were at some point summoned.
Roberta Santoro, who lives just behind Flores’ home, didn’t know something was amiss.
“I don’t recall hearing anything,” she said.
Three small dogs scurried around Santoro’s feet: She said typically the pups bark at any disturbance, and she’s sure they would have sounded the alarm if loud noises had been heard at the house behind them on Saturday night.
“If a butterfly flies by, they’re all over it,” she said.
Santoro said her only indication something was wrong was when she saw police and paramedics at the home on Sunday.
“I thought, ‘Oh my goodness, there must have been a terrible accident,'” she said.
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