Police in Detroit arrested a mother of four Tuesday after the bodies of two of her children were found in a deep freezer in the family's home.
The bodies were found by a bailiff who was carrying out an eviction order in the three-bedroom home in an low-income apartment complex east of downtown. Detroit Police Chief James Craig said the bodies belonged to an 11-year-old boy and a 14-year-old girl. An autopsy to determine the cause of death was planned.
WJBK reported that police found the mother in a neighboring apartment. She was later arrested after questioning. Her two other children, aged 11 and 17, were found at a neighbor's home and placed in protective custody. Neither the mother nor the children have been formally identified by authorities.
It was not immediately clear how long the bodies had been in the freezer, but neighbor and friend Tori Childs told the Associated Press that she hadn't seen the two dead children in about a year.
"I haven't seen them since they were playing with my step-kids," Childs said.
Neighbors described the mother to WJBK as an "overprotective parent" and said she would go on Facebook to talk about how much she loved her children. Some neighbors said her children were home-schooled. Others say she told them the children were staying with other family members.
The woman has lived in the complex at least 10 years. She was unemployed, was having money troubles and had gotten behind on her rent. Friends knew about the impending eviction.
"She was really behind, but she didn't have it," Childs said, referring to money to pay the rent.
Court records show a judgment filed last month against the woman for $2,206 owed to the complex.
WJBK reported that two neighbors saw the mother Tuesday morning when a dumpster arrived as part of the eviction process. They said the woman had tears in her eyes.
"She said 'Tori, I'm sorry'", Childs told the station, "and then the police officer put her in the car and drove her away."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.