MONTCLAIR, N.J. – A man drowned his two young daughters in a bathtub and hanged himself at his home, authorities said.
The bodies of the 46-year-old man and the children, ages 5 and 6, were found Thursday, just hours after the girls' mother had dropped them off for a visit, police said.
The deaths were a double-murder and suicide, Montclair Deputy Police Chief Roger Terry said.
Police went to the house after the mother became concerned because the man hadn't answered his phone and no one answered the door when she knocked, Terry said.
Officers forced the door open and found the girls fully clothed and submerged in a bathtub on the first floor. They found the man hanging in a room on the third floor.
Assemblyman Thomas Giblin, D-Essex, identified the man as Thomas Reilly, a building engineer and former bar owner. Reilly emigrated from Ireland about 15 years ago and moved into the Montclair apartment in recent months after experiencing marital difficulties, Giblin said.
"This was so out of character," Giblin said. "He was a jovial type guy. All he ever did was work hard. Something happened here — I don't know."