A horrific family tragedy was unfolding in Minnesota on Friday, with police reporting that a father was found dead of an apparent suicide before the mother and three kids apparently drowned in a lake.
Authorities from an array of law enforcement and rescue agencies searching Vadnais Lake northeast of Minneapolis found the body of one child.
"A horrible set of facts appears to be developing," Ramsey County Sheriff Bob Fletcher told reporters.
Local TV station WCCO reported that the mother's car and shoes belonging to her and the children—all under the age of 5—were found near the lake.
Police had not released any more details about the father's death on Friday morning or what Fletcher called "a likely triple homicide" at the lake. No names were released.
In an interview with the Star Tribune , Lt. Joe Steiner with the Maplewood Police Department said officers responded to a mobile home park at about 10:30 a.m. Friday after reports of a suicide. He said they determined that the female partner of the victim had left with their children.
Meanwhile, Fletcher said authorities "don’t know for a certainty" whether the woman's body is in the lake.
"We don’t know if it’s a triple homicide followed by a suicide or if she got picked up by another party and fled," he said.
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