MORRISVILLE, Pa. (FOX 29) - A mother and daughter charged in the slayings of five family members, including three children, in Bucks County tell police that the killings were intended to be a mass murder-suicide.
Shana Decree, 45, and Dominique Decree, 19, are charged with five counts of homicide and one count each of conspiracy.
The victims included Shana Decree's children Naa'Irah Smith, 25, and Damon Decree Jr., 13, both of Morrisville; as well as Shana Decree's sister Jamilla Campbell, of Trenton, New Jersey, and Campbell's 9-year-old twin daughters Imani and Erika Allen. Authorities did not reveal how they died.
According to police, Dominique Decree initially claimed an unknown man caused her injuries and asked if her family was still alive. She also reportedly advised her wish to die.
Shana Decree initially told detectives that Jamilla Campbell's boyfriend and two unknown men were resposible for the killings.
The mother and daughter subsequently confessed to the murders of their family members, according to authorities.
Authorities who had been looking for Campbell's 17-year-old son Joshua found him in Willingboro, New Jersey, where he was staying with friends, McClay said.
Bucks County prosecutor Matthew Weintraub earlier stressed the teen is not a suspect, saying authorities just want to "ensure his safety."
At Mooresville Middle Schooll, students decorated a locker in memory of their 13-year-old classmate Damon Decree Jr.
"We are having a hard time making sense of the senseless," said Morrisville school district superintendent Jason Harris.
On Tuesday, the superintendent spoke with stunned parents about the murders that has the neighborhood overcome with grief.
"We all experienced this loss in a different way. It's easy to say we'll get through this, but getting through it together is the main point," he said.
A growing vigil remains at Robert Morris Apartments, which is still considered a crime scene. Police believe the family of eight lived inside the cramped apartment.
Shana Decree was arraigned early Tuesday, while Dominique Decree was arraigned in the afternoon. It isn't clear whether either woman has a lawyer to speak for her. Court papers show they have not requested a public defender, and no attorney information is listed.