Clearwater, FL – A 34-year-old mother is believed to have killed her two children before hanging herself at their home, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office.
According to NBC News, deputies responded to call summoning them to a house in unincorporated Clearwater, west of Tampa, after 2am. Inside the house, officers found 34-year-old mother Dawn Brown and her 5-year-old and 9-year-old children dead in the house.
The children’s cause of death will be released pending an autopsy, but deputies said that they believe that Brown killed the children before hanging herself from the bedroom ceiling fan with an electrical cord, reports TBO.
According to neighbor Nichole Bell, the boys both attended McMullen-Booth Elementary School. The neighbor’s son, Bradley (age: 8) also attends the school, and was one of 9-year-old Zander’s best friends. According to Bell, Bradley and Zander got into a fight at the school bus stop on Friday morning, and were sent to the guidance counselor when they arrived at the school.
Bell most recently spoke to Brown at a recent back-to-school open house event. “I can’t believe it. She was so interested in her kids’ educations,” Bell said.
Another neighbor, William Lavold, said that he knew the family very well and was considered something of a godfather to the two boys. He said that the children had planned to go for a ride on his boat today. Instead, he received a text message around 3am regarding trouble at the Brown house, though he did not see it until hours later. He went to the house around 6am, saw what had happened, and called the authorities.
A memorial for the two boys has been erected outside of the house. The note attached reads “God bless, and Fly free in heaven.”