FORT SMITH, Ark. – Two young children visiting their mother for Christmas were found dead near her body in a Fort Smith apartment, where authorities arrested the woman's boyfriend early Tuesday, police said.
The three bodies bore no obvious wounds and appeared to have been there for as long as six days, police said. The causes of death had yet to be determined.
Officers went to the apartment after receiving a call shortly after midnight from the boyfriend's father in Colorado saying his son, James Aaron Miller, had sent him a text message that sounded suicidal, Fort Smith police Sgt. Jarrard Copeland said.
When officers arrived at the apartment the woman and Miller shared, Miller, 30, answered the door, Copeland said.
"He told the officer he was ready to go," Copeland said.
Inside, police found the bodies of Bridgette Barr, 28, her 5-year-old daughter, Sydney, and 2-year-old son, Garrett. Barr's body was underneath a blanket, Copeland said. Sydney was found a short distance away, and Garrett was in the apartment's bathtub, he said.
Copeland said it appeared that Miller might have tried to clean up after the deaths. He said officers found window cleaner and signs the walls had been recently cleaned.
Miller was being held Tuesday without bail at the Sebastian County Jail on suspicion of committing the killings, Copeland said. No charge has yet been filed.
The children normally live with their father in Muldrow, Okla., about 10 miles from Fort Smith, Copeland said. He did not identify the father, and no number could be reached for any relatives of the children with the last name of Barr in Muldrow.