Three kids including baby found dead at home in tragedy as police arrest mum

A mum has been charged with three counts of murder and three counts of assault on a child causing death after her children were found unresponsive at their home, lawyers have said.

Police discovered the bodies of Mia Camila Rodriguez, four, Mason Mateo Rodriguez, three, and one-month-old Milan Mateas Rodriguez at their home in Los Angeles, US, on Monday.

Los Angeles County District Attorney's office now says that their mum Sandra Chico, 28, has been charged over the deaths after she was arrested earlier this week.

Sheriff's deputies responded to the home on the 600 block of South Ferris Avenue just before 1pm. where they found the children unresponsive and not breathing.

Police officers and paramedics attempted life-saving measures, but all three children were pronounced dead at the scene.

Sheriff's investigators have not confirmed exactly how they died, but family members say Chico suffocated them and then tried to kill herself.

LA County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said there had been no signs of trouble at the family home.

"There was no forewarning of any kind. There was no repeated calls for service. DCFS was not involved. There was no allegations of child abuse. This was out of the blue tragedy," Villanueva said.

Chico's sister Elizabeth said her older sibling had been struggling with post-partum depression.

The children's grandmother said the father was at work during the incident.

"I won't criticise her," the grandmother said in Spanish, ABC7 reports. "I wish her well. She is also a victim of her illness, which is depression. And even more so during these times that people couldn't go out. She never went out for anything."

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Cops said preliminary information revealed no previous reports of abuse or child neglect at the home.

An uncle told CBSLA: “It’s pretty hard to determine what really happened.

“I mean, because, I know her. I know she would do anything for those kids, and that’s what’s so hard to understand what happened.”

The children's grandmother said: "I won't criticize her. She is also a victim of her illness, which is depression.

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"And even more so during these times that people couldn't go out. She never went out for anything."

Chico's brother-in-law Arturo Zerzeo told ABC7: "I'm getting messages from a lot of people saying that they're judging my sister-in-law. They're telling her that she was a bad mother.

"But the only thing I ask is don't judge. I know it's hard, but don't judge."

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"In an instant, three innocent children were taken from us and we are crestfallen," District Attorney George Gascón said in a statement. "Nothing is more heartbreaking than the tragic betrayal of a parent failing to protect their children."

Chico’s bail was originally set at $2 million but it was increased to $6 million on Wednesday.

Arraignment will be continued to July 21.

A GoFundMe page for the family has so far raised more than $26,000.

For emotional support, you can call the Samaritans 24-hour helpline on 116 123, email [email protected], visit a Samaritans branch in person or go to the Samaritans website.

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