Phoenix police say mom sang to young children while killing them

Jan 20, 2020, 9:34 PM | Updated: Jan 22, 2020, 8:19 am

Rachel Henry (Maricopa County Sheriff's Office Photo)...

Rachel Henry (Maricopa County Sheriff's Office Photo)

(Maricopa County Sheriff's Office Photo)

PHOENIX — Phoenix police say a mother who reportedly admitted to killing her three young children sang to them while suffocating them.

According to police documents, 22-year-old Rachel Henry killed her 3-year-old boy, 1-year-old girl and 7-month old girl on Monday afternoon by smothering them.

Henry first killed the 1-year-old female by placing her hand over the child’s mouth while the 3-year-old boy screamed at and punched his mother in an attempt to stop the assault, according to police documents.

Henry then took the 3-year-old child into a back bedroom to change his underwear and suffocated the child with her hands and body weight while singing to him while he struggled, according to police documents.

Finally, Henry put the 7-month-old baby to sleep before placing her hand over the baby’s mouth and singing to her until she passed away, police documents said.

Henry then placed the children in the living room in positions as if they were sleeping, according to police documents.

Authorities responded to a call around 7:30 p.m. Monday at a residence near Baseline Road and 24th Street where the kids were found unresponsive in the living room.

Henry was booked on three counts of first-degree murder on Tuesday morning.

According to Phoenix police, officers attempted CPR but were unable to revive the children.

The children, who police said had no obvious signs of trauma, were pronounced dead at the scene.

Family members said they last saw the children alive at about 2 p.m., according to police documents.

Police interviewed Henry, the 30-year-old father and a 49-year-old relative, who were at the home. First responders were told the children recently had been ill.

Family members told police Henry had a methamphetamine addiction and had recently been acting strange, according to police documents.

Phoenix Fire Capt. Rob McDade told KTAR News 92.3 FM the children being unresponsive was not the result of a drowning, as was originally reported.

Police said the family had recently moved to Arizona from Oklahoma.

Bond for Henry was set at $3 million.

KTAR News’ Jim Cross and Julie Levin contributed to this report.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

Split image of the Arizona flag on the left and state Rep. Matt Gress on the House floor April 24, ...

Lawmakers in Arizona House pass bill to repeal near-total abortion ban

The Arizona House of Representatives passed a bill Wednesday to repeal the state’s near-total ban on abortions.

33 minutes ago

Follow @suelenrivera...

SuElen Rivera

Arizona’s oldest predominantly Black community listed on National Register of Historic Places

The Randolph Townsite Historic District located 50 miles southeast of Phoenix was listed as a traditional cultural place.

2 hours ago

File photo of a Valley Metro bus stop sign....

Man stabbed to death at west Phoenix bus stop, no arrest made

A man was stabbed to death at a bus stop near 39th Avenue and Baseline Road in Phoenix on Tuesday night, authorities said.

3 hours ago

File photo of Phoenix police SUVs parked in front of a metal utility pole. A suspect was arrested A...

Arrest made in shooting that led to power outage in Phoenix nearly 3 months ago

A suspect was arrested Tuesday in connection with a fatal shooting that led to a power outage in east Phoenix in February.

4 hours ago

Images show brush fire in Whetstone area in southeastern Arizona. (City of Tombstone Fire Departmen...

SuElen Rivera

Elderly man dies after accidentally starting brush fire in southeastern Arizona

An elderly man died on Tuesday from burn injuries he sustained after he and his son accidentally started a brush fire in southeastern Arizona.

6 hours ago

Follow @KTAR923...

New Maricopa County animal shelter to open soon in Mesa

Maricopa County Animal Care and Control will open the doors to its new East Valley shelter on May 2, officials said.

8 hours ago

Sponsored Articles



Here are 5 things Arizona residents need to know about their HVAC system

It's warming back up in the Valley, which means it's time to think about your air conditioning system's preparedness for summer.


Midwestern University

Midwestern University Clinics: transforming health care in the valley

Midwestern University, long a fixture of comprehensive health care education in the West Valley, is also a recognized leader in community health care.


Collins Comfort Masters

Avoid a potential emergency and get your home’s heating and furnace safety checked

With the weather getting colder throughout the Valley, the best time to make sure your heating is all up to date is now. 

Phoenix police say mom sang to young children while killing them