A 36-year-old Connecticut woman killed her three young children before hanging herself in an outdoor shed, police said.
Connecticut Woman Killed 3 Kids Before Taking Her Own Life
Police Say The Three Young Kids Died By Strangulation
The Danbury Police Department said the dead include Sonia Loja, 36; Junior Panjon, 12; Joselyn Panjon, 10; and Jonael Panjon, 5.
Sonia Loja was the mother of the children, who appear to have died by strangulation, according to police. Investigators said Loja's cause of death was asphyxia by hanging.
Police Discovered The Bodies During A Welfare Check After A Distraught Call
Autopsies of the deceased are planned at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Farmington.
"Pending an official autopsy, preliminary findings indicate that Ms. Loja strangled her three children before killing herself," Det. Capt. Mark Williams said in a statement.
Danbury police officers were first called to the home for a well-being check by a caller who was "distraught and crying," according to police. They found the Panjon children dead inside and their mother was dead in the home's outside shed. It is unclear who the original caller was who brought the police to the home.
Mayor Of City Calls The Deaths 'Truly Horrible Event'
In a statement released Thursday, Mayor Dean Esposito said: "A truly horrible event occurred in our city yesterday and we mourn the tragic loss of life. In the coming days, mental health and counseling services will be provided through collaboration with the Danbury Public Schools and the City of Danbury. Our community grieves for the innocent lives taken from us. We will get through this together."
Father Has Posted Photos Of His Children And Wife On Facebook Amid Messages Of Support
Pedro Panjon, the father and husband, has taken to Facebook to share photos of his wife and three children, who are all now all gone. The photos show a happy family with big smiles on their faces.
His page lists that he is originally from Ecuador. Many of the messages of condolences and support are in his native language of Spanish. It is unclear how long the family was living in Connecticut.
Two of the three children were students in the Danbury Public Schools, according to Superintendent Kevin Walston, who released a statement.
"Losing children to violence is becoming far too common in our nation and events such as these shine a light on the challenges communities face, specifically around mental health, that leave so many people vulnerable," Walston said in a statement.