Mother Killed Young Children and Herself in Suspected Murder-Suicide 

Connie, David and Layla
Connie, David and Layla

A tight-knit town is mourning the loss of a mother and her two children, who were found dead in a suspected murder-suicide on Monday, June 6. 

According to AL.com, the bodies of Connie Henriksen Foster, 35, and her children, Layla House, 10, and David “Danger” House, 8, were discovered inside their home in Huntsville, Alabama, by Foster’s husband, Graham. Investigators are awaiting toxicology reports to determine an official cause of death, but police have said there was no evidence of gunshot or stab wounds, the website reported. 

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Court records obtained by AL.com show that Foster and her ex-husband, David House, were embroiled in a custody fight for Layla and David. They were due to appear in court on July 11. 

The pair — who split in 2011 — had joint custody, with each having the kids alternating weeks, the local news site reported. But in March, House filed a petition demanding more time. House alleged Foster was using custody as “weapon” against him. He also requested to pay less child support.

Foster responded to his petition by arguing that because of House’s frequent travel for work, she had the children more than 50 percent of the time. “Until the filing of his petition, the father has never asked for additional time with the children, and, in fact, he relies on the mother’s flexibility to accommodate his work schedule,” the document read, according to AL.com

Foster, who had recently remarried, reportedly said that House could be found in criminal contempt of their custody agreement for failing to take Layla and David to church and for not overseeing their homework.

The deaths have left relatives and friends stunned.

David, Connie and Layla
David, Connie and Layla

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“The family asks that the public not judge and make assumptions as to why this terrible tragedy happened,” Foster’s family told Us Weekly in a statement. “Connie was a wonderful mother who loved her children! She was a talented hairdresser and was a very determined person. She had a strong faith in God but had lost hope and was in a low place in her life, but no one saw this tragedy coming!”

In the statement, Layla is described as strong and confident. “She was respectful, well-spoken and mature for her age. She knew right from wrong and was a great example to her younger brother,” the family wrote. “David was kind and patient. When asked what his favorite animal is he would pick something big and ferocious like a shark. But he would pronounce it showk.” 

The funeral is scheduled for 10 a.m. on Saturday, June 11.

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