A suburban Atlanta mother was arrested Thursday in the stabbing death of her four children and their father, officials said.
Isabel Martinez, 33, is charged with six counts of aggravated assault and five counts each of murder and malice murder, the Gwinnett County Sheriff’s Office said. The 33-year-old is being held without bond at the Gwinnett County Jail for US Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials, authorities said.
A fifth child was found with injuries, officials said. That girl’s condition was unknown.
All the children discovered at the home near Loganville, in Gwinnett County, Georgia, about 30 miles east of Atlanta, appear to be under age 10, officials said. One neighbor told CNN one of the children who was fatally stabbed was 4 years old. The male victim was in his mid-30s.
The call came in shortly before 5 a.m., Gwinnett County Police said.
“This is a horrendous crime not only for the victims but for the extended family, neighborhood and community,” police said. “We are hoping and praying that the remaining victim survives.”
Investigators obtained a search warrant for the residence and were interviewing neighbors.
A relative of the family, who asked not to be identified, told CNN the family had recently returned from a vacation and the mother had been depressed over the death of her father.
Neighbor Rafael Ramirez said the mother had been “acting bizarre” and experiencing hallucinations since the death of her father about 20 days ago. She apparently had spoken to a pastor at a local church on Thursday morning, according to Ramirez. The family has lived in the quiet community for three or four months, according to neighbor Jim Hollandsworth, who works at an after-school program the children attended.
The family has relatives in the area, the neighbor said.