A Detroit mother is in custody after workers who showed up Tuesday to evict her for non-payment of rent discovered a freezer holding the bodies of two of her children, police say.
The woman, identified as Mitchelle Blair, 35, has not been charged as of yet in the deaths of those children, a boy about 11 years old and a girl about 14 years old, according to The Detroit News.
Blair’s two other children, ages 8 and 17, are now in protective custody, Detroit Police Chief James Craig told reporters at the scene, the Detroit Free Press reports.
“The medical examiner will be performing autopsies in the next day, and at that time, we will know the cause of death of these two children,” Craig said in a news conference Wednesday.
Following the discovery, police quickly located Blair after residents of the low-income apartments said she could be found with another relative who also lived in the housing complex.
Police told Detroit’s FOX 2 that Blair has confessed, and that according to the confession, the boy has been dead since 2012 and the girl for at least a year.
Police, who said Blair has been “very cooperative,” is charged only with child abuse at this time, reports FOX 2. But they add that several neighbors and family friends told them Blair had said she killed her children, and that in her confession Blair said she had caught her kids sexually abusing another sibling.
A neighbor, Shanetria Lanier, 21, told The News that residents had wondered what became of the two children. “When people asked her where her other two kids are, she said they were at their aunt’s house. Or sometimes she’d tell people they stayed inside because they didn’t like to be around people.”
Because Blair said she home-schooled her children, “no schools were wondering where they were,” Lanier added.
A court officer, Lee Gordon, said that her crew entered the town home in the Martin Luther King Apartments to clear the property of furniture in accordance with Blair’s eviction, and spotted the small, deep freezer just inside the door, according to the Free Press.
When they opened it, they saw a body and called 911, said Gordon. The body was covered by a black plastic bag and there was frost on the face of the person, which Gordon at first believed was an older woman. Police later discovered the second body.
“I’m really sickened now to find out that it was babies,” she said. “It’s not an easy pill to swallow.”
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