VADNAIS HEIGHTS, Minn. – Officials recovered the bodies of three children and a mother from Lake Vadnais, after the search began Friday night in what is believed to be a triple murder case. All three children are under the age of six.
The last body was found at 11 a.m. Saturday. Two of them are boys, and the other is a girl.
The search comes after Maplewood police said they received information about a potential murder-suicide at around 4 p.m. that they believe is related to a suicide that took place at around 10:00 p.m.: 30 a.m. Friday on the 1300 block of Pearson Drive.
Authorities responded to a welfare check at Lake Vadnais Regional Park, where they found a car and children’s shoes.
The crew found the first child on Friday night around 7:30pm. A second child was pulled out of the water around midnight, and divers searched the area until 3 a.m. Recovery operations resumed at 6 a.m. and the woman’s body was found. was found at 10:40 a.m. At 11 am, the third one was pulled out of the lake. The bodies were found on the east side of the lake, according to Ramsey County Sheriff Mike Martin.
“Our hearts go out to the families involved here and their friends,” he said. “Our goal was to find the children and the mother and return them to their families, and we’re glad we were able to do that.”
The search involved several state agencies, volunteer groups, a helicopter and several ships. The head of the search and rescue team, Cmdr. Eric Bradt of the Ramsey County Sheriff’s Office, said the search was one of the hardest of his career.
“I’ve been in this job for 30 years as a cop … and this is one of the more difficult things,” he said.
The investigation is still active and ongoing. The bodies were taken to the medical examiner’s office for further investigation. No name has been released.
Mental health resources
If you are contemplating suicide, you can text the Suicide Prevention Hotline at 741741 or call 1-800-273-8255.