4 Children Fatally Stabbed in Memphis; Mother in Custody | NBC 10 Philadelphia
National & International News
The day’s top national and international news

4 Children Fatally Stabbed in Memphis; Mother in Custody

"What would babies do to make you do that?" a neighbor said

    processing...

    NEWSLETTERS

    Four young children were stabbed to death in a gated apartment complex in suburban Memphis on Friday, and police took their mother into custody for questioning. She has not been charged. 

    Deputies were called to the complex in unincorporated Shelby County shortly before 1 p.m., said county Sheriff Bill Oldham, who did not specifically allege that the mother had stabbed the children. 

    "This is an egregious act of evil that has shocked us to our core," Oldham said. "I will never understand how anyone can do this." 

    Officials have not released the ages of the children, but sheriff's office spokesman Earle Farrell said deputies responding to the scene called them "babies." 

    Wal-Mart Rejects 'Blue Lives Matter' Cake

    [NATL-DFW] Wal-Mart Rejects 'Blue Lives Matter' Cake
    A McDonough, Georgia, Walmart is facing a backlash after an employe refused to make a "Blue Lives Matter" cake for a retiring police officer, and the story is going viral. The officer's daughter says it was a cake for the officer's retirement party after serving for 25 years. After a friend posted about the incident on Facebook, a manager called her to apologize and make the cake. Walmart's corporate communications department also issued an apology. (Published 6 hours ago)

    "What can you say?" said neighbor Sean Ahearn. "It's just a terrible, terrible thing." 

    Ahearn said he didn't know the family by name, but that he often saw the children, who all appeared to be under age 6, playing in the front yard. They liked to pet his dog when he was taking it for a walk, he said. 

    "From what I saw, they were very open and friendly kids," he said. "You never imagine that this kind of thing could happen." 

    The investigation is in a very preliminary stage and investigators do not know if the mother had any mental health issues, Oldham said. He said authorities are working to notify the next of kin and won't release names before that.

    Man Braves Iowa Flood Waters to Save Deer

    [NATL-DFW] Man Braves Iowa Flood Waters to Save Deer
    An Iowa man risks his own life to save a deer from Cedar River floodwaters. (Published Monday, Sept. 26, 2016)

    "One of the most difficult questions in any investigation is always, 'Why did this happen?'" he said. 

    Oldham said the district attorney general's special victims' unit has been called in and Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell has promised all resources necessary for the investigation. 

    County Commissioner Mark Billingsley also said the county would work to help the family of the children recover. 

    "It's just a very sad day," he said. "It's really beyond words, quite frankly." 

    What Visitors Can Expect at African American History Museum

    [NATL-DC] What Visitors Can Expect at African American History Museum
    Dr. Greg Carr, associate professor and chair of the department of Afro-American Studies at Howard University, discusses the the significance of the museum and what can people expect when they walk in. (Published Sunday, Sept. 25, 2016)

    The apartment where the stabbing occurred is in a gated community with a golf course called The Greens at Irene. On Friday afternoon, deputies were standing at the gate house questioning motorists as they drove into the neighborhood. 

    Resident Patricia Johnson spoke with reporters from her car Friday afternoon. She said she wasn't allowed to leave for two hours as deputies investigated the scene. 

    She has a child, and said she burst into tears when she heard about the killings. 

    "I can't fathom that," she said. "What would babies do to make you do that?" 

    The news triggered painful memories for Johnson and others in Memphis: In 2008, a man's bloody rampage in the city left six dead, including two children, ages 2 and 4. 

    Jessie Dotson was convicted of shooting his brother during an argument at a house on Lester Street, then attacking everyone else in the house with a gun, boards and knives in an attempt to eliminate witnesses. 

    Three other children were stabbed but survived, including a 2-month-old girl and 9-year-old boy, who was found in a bathtub with a 4 ½-inch knife blade embedded in his skull. The survivors are known as the "miracles of Lester Street." 

    Dotson was convicted and sentenced to death in 2010.

    How to Protect Yourself From Hackers

    [NATL] How to Protect Yourself From Hackers
    Thursday's news that Yahoo suffered a hack of 500 million of its user accounts may have many people taking a new look at how to keep their own email accounts and personal information secure. One easy way to protect yourself from hackers is by regularly updating your software. "Hackers are always finding new vulnerabilities to exploit," said Consumer Reports Editor Jerry Beilinson. (Published Friday, Sept. 23, 2016)

    Associated Press writers Erik Schelzig and Travis Loller in Nashville, Tennessee, contributed to this report.