Paul Clarke, Gleaner Writer
Shock, anguish and outrage gripped the farming community of Woodgrove in Wait-A-Bit, Trelawny, yesterday as residents woke up to the horrifying news that a resident had slaughtered his two young children - Chrisanne and Tessone - and then added to the carnage by committing suicide.
"This makes the family really cut up ... . We were not looking for anything like this from the youth (the man who committed the act)," said the slain children's grand uncle, Audley Mullings, who lives in close proximity to the murder scene. "We are really surprised and shocked to know that this has happened to the family."
Reports are that the children's father, 34-year-old farmer Kenville Mullings, became enraged by a decision by his common-law wife, 25-year-old Tamara Smith, to end their six-year relationship and to move out of the home they shared with the two children.
"They had an argument and she (Tamara) went to her mother's home in Coleyville (just over the Trelawny border in Manchester)," said the grand uncle. "He (the killer) borrowed a relative's car and went to Coleyville with the two children, who the mother had left behind."
When he got to Coleyville, Mullings reportedly attacked Smith with a machete, but relatives rushed to her assistance. The still enraged Mullings reportedly dropped the machete and drove back home to Woodgrove with the children at approximately 8 p.m.
After Mullings left with the children, the terrified Smith made telephone contact with both the Wait-A-Bit and Christiana police stations, but it would appear that no immediate action was taken. According to her, she was told that she had to visit the police stations personally.
Early in the morning, at approximately 1:30, a relative said she heard strange sounds coming from Mulling's house and went to investigate. Repeated calls yielded no answers and out of concern, the door was kicked-off.
"I saw the baby lying face down with her throat cut and the body of the father hanging from a piece of rope, which was tied to the roof," said the relative of the deceased children, who asked not to be identified. "The other child was found outside, wrapped in his (her father's) blazer and her throat also slashed."
Following the gruesome discovery, the Wait-A-Bit police were alerted and they arrived at the scene to be confronted by the bodies of the father and daughters.
"We saw one of the little girls covered in blood in the house and the body of the father hanging from the roof," a policeman told The Gleaner. "We were later directed outside, where we saw the body of the other child."
Reacting to the news that a concerned Smith had made contact with both the Wait-A-Bit and Christiana Police and did not get any tangible response, Assistant Commissioner of Police Devon Watkis, the commanding officer for Area One, said an investigation will be launched to determine if Smith's complaint was handled properly.
"A parallel investigation will be launched to determine whether or not the police acted properly when they got the complaint from the mother," said ACP Watkis. "If the police are found to have acted improperly, consequential action will be taken."