Mother arrested on suspicion of murder of 3 children in home

Police investigate the scene where three children were found dead at a residence after police responded to a call, on Sunday in the Woodland Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles. Myung J. Chun/Los Angeles Times/TNS

LOS ANGELES — A 38-year-old woman has been arrested on suspicion of murder after her three children were found dead at a home in the Woodland Hills area of Los Angeles on Sunday, police said.

Angela Flores was booked shortly after 9 p.m. and is being held in lieu of $3-million bail, LAPD Officer Lizeth Lomeli said Monday.

Los Angeles police received a 911 call about 7:40 a.m. Sunday and rushed to the 22500 block of Victory Boulevard, a residential area in the San Fernando Valley. Officers found three children — a 12-year-old girl and two 8-year-old boys — who were unresponsive, authorities said.

Paramedics were called to the scene, and all three children were pronounced dead. Police responded to the home to reports of an assault with a deadly weapon.

“No other suspects are being sought at the moment,” LAPD public information officer Matthew Cruz said.

The abused child unit within the LAPD’s Juvenile Division is investigating the specific cause and manner in which the children died.

Authorities were seen Sunday afternoon going in and out of the one-story ranch-style house, which was cordoned off with police tape. Cars on Victory Boulevard slowed to look.

Prisila Canales, who lives two houses from the scene, said she heard the mother screaming about 10:30 p.m. Saturday, “My family is abusing me!”

Canales said she then saw the woman, who moved into the house two or three months ago, walk into the next-door neighbor’s yard, open a Bible and light candles.

Authorities were notified about the behavior, and paramedics arrived about midnight and put her on a stretcher. Canales said the woman tried to wrangle herself free and yelled, “Where’s my Bible?”

“The screaming you heard, you knew she was not OK,” Canales said. “I can still hear her screaming.”

John, 34, who lives a block from the scene and declined to give his last name, said he heard muffled cries from a child Saturday night. “I thought I was just dreaming,” he said.

“I thought (the area) was supposed to be safe,” he added. “Nothing is safe nowadays.”

Stephen Hayes, a 71-year-old neighbor, stared at the house Sunday afternoon. He had been doing so on and off since about 9 a.m., he said.

Hayes said he had seen the family ride bikes. “They look like nice, normal people,” he said. “It is one of the nicest-looking houses on the block.”

(Los Angles Times staff writer Laura Newberry contributed to this report.)

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