CASTLE ROCK, Colo. (CBS4/AP) – The Castle Rock mother accused of killing her 6 and 9-year-old children went before a judge Tuesday morning with bandages on her wrists.
Kelli Murphy, 41, was released from the hospital and taken into police custody on Monday. Police found her children — a 6-year-old girl and a 9-year-old boy — dead inside their home in the Founders Village after they say Murphy called 911 Monday and was threatening to commit suicide.
The children were identified Tuesday by the coroner as Liam and Madigan.
Police say she told them her kids were “in heaven” and also that she slit her wrists. The cause of death for the children is under investigation. Police say they had no visible injuries.
The district judge on Tuesday ordered Murphy held without bond. She will be back in court on Friday and will likely face two counts of first-degree murder.
Murphy had been going through divorce and bankruptcy proceedings. Police said she and her husband had been living separately and that he didn’t arrive on the scene Monday until after officers responded. Court documents show Murphy and her husband filed for bankruptcy last June and then for divorce in February.
A complaint of domestic abuse had been filed and a temporary restraining order granted in March. The restraining order was vacated a week later. Murphy tried to withdraw her request for a divorce on April 26, saying she made it “wrongly, out of anger.” Authorities say officers answered five or six calls to the home in recent months and no criminal behavior was suspected at those times.
Authorities say officers answered five or six calls to the home in recent months and no criminal behavior was suspected at those times. On Sunday, Murphy’s husband asked for a welfare check on the house, but police did not release details of that incident. Police Chief Tony Lane said her husband is not a suspect in the investigation.
On Tuesday the coroner said it may be as much as 6 weeks before she knows how they died.
A makeshift memorial was set up outside Murphy’s house with flowers and stuffed animals.
A neighbor talked to CBS4 about Murphy on Tuesday afternoon.
“She would sit in the driveway and she would supervise them when they were out playing,” the neighbor said. “I attempted to socialize with her and I never got a response.”
The children died one day before the last day of school. They attended Rock Ridge Elementary where Liam was in third grade and Madigan was in kindergarten. Crisis teams were in school on Tuesday to provide counseling.
The Douglas County School District sent parents a letter to let them know what happened to their children’s classmates. The letter reads, “A member of your child’s class has died. Liam (3rd Grade) and Madigan Murphy (kindergarten) were found dead in their home today. It is best to limit a child’s exposure to the media to traumatic events and it is better to hear the information from you.”
The children’s father, who has been identified as Eric Murphy, released a statement on Tuesday. It reads, “We wish to thank everyone for their prayers and support during this most difficult time.”