A 28-year-old woman whose three young children were found dead in an East Los Angeles house has been arrested on suspicion of murder, authorities said Tuesday.
Sandra Chico was being held on $2 million bail, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
“Based on their preliminary investigation, detectives have arrested their biological mother Sandra Chico for the three murders,” sheriff’s Deputy Trina Schrader said in a statement Tuesday morning.
Chico was scheduled to appear in court at the Clara Shortridge Foltz Criminal Justice Center on Wednesday, Schrader said.
Deputies from the East Los Angeles Sheriff’s Station responded to the house in the 600 block of Ferris Avenue, between Arizona Avenue and Atlantic Boulevard in the Belvedere Gardens area, at about 12:45 p.m. Monday after receiving a report that two children at the home were not breathing, according to Lt. Charles Calderaro.
Deputies found two boys and a girl in the home and none was breathing, Calderaro said. Paramedics were called, but all three children were pronounced dead at the scene.
They were identified Tuesday by the Los Angeles County coroner’s office as Mia Camila Rodriguez, 4; Mason Mateo Rodriguez, 3; and Milan Mateas Rodriguez, who was born on May 5 of this year. Autopsies were pending to determine their cause of death.
Following the discovery, Chico was identified as a person of interest and was detained, Calderaro said. He said it was too early in the investigation to speculate on a motive for the children’s deaths.
Preliminary information revealed no prior reports of abuse or child neglect to the home or the mother, according to Deputy Eric Ortiz of the Sheriff’s Information Bureau.
Anyone with information about the case was asked to call the sheriff’s Homicide Bureau at 323-890-5500. Anonymous tips can be called in to Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477 or submitted online at lacrimestoppers.org.