Police believe 3 children drowned by mother at NYC beach

Sep 12, 2022, 4:53 AM | Updated: 4:50 pm
New York Police investigators examine a stretch of beach at Coney Island where three children were ...

New York Police investigators examine a stretch of beach at Coney Island where three children were found dead in the surf, Monday, Sept. 12, 2022, in New York. Authorities believe the children may have been drowned by their mother. (AP Photo/Joseph Frederick)

(AP Photo/Joseph Frederick)

NEW YORK (AP) — Three children were found dead on the beach near Brooklyn’s famed Coney Island boardwalk early Monday and police believe they may have been drowned by their mother.

The bodies of the children, identified by police as Zachary Merdy, 7; Lilana Merdy, 4, and 3-month-old Oliver Bondarev, were found after a nearly three-hour search that began at 1:40 a.m. when a relative called police, worried the woman intended to harm her children.

The mother, identified by family members as 30-year-old Erin Merdy, was found 90 minutes later, barefoot and soaking wet, 2 miles (3 kilometers) down the boardwalk from the section of Coney Island where she lived.

Detectives were trying to question Merdy at the local police precinct house.

“So far, she’s not said anything,” said New York Police Department Chief of Department Kenneth Corey.

The search for the children intensified after the mother was found alone. Police sent in a helicopter and marine units. The children were found at the water’s edge shortly after 4:30 a.m. on a quiet section of beach about 13 blocks from the stadium where the Brooklyn Cyclones minor league baseball team plays.

Efforts to revive the children at a nearby hospital failed, Corey said.

Merdy’s mother, Jacqueline Scott, 56, told the Daily News that her daughter was a loving mother but had been having a rough time recently.

“She might have been going through postpartum depression,” Scott told the newspaper. “She was a good mother.”

Scott said she tried to talk to her daughter Sunday.

“I reached out to her yesterday and she said she was doing laundry and I said I wanted to speak to the kids,” Scott said. “I tried to call her twice on the phone after that and there was no answer.”

The children’s bodies were found three blocks from Merdy’s apartment building, where police had first gone when the search began. Corey said officers had canvassed the beach and the boardwalk, searched neighborhood streets and checked the local hospital in the hunt for the children before the mother was found on the boardwalk.

As they continued to search the area, police found a shoe in the water and bagged it as evidence.

A security supervisor for Merdy’s building said the family had moved in less than a year ago. Corey said the mother had not been reported to authorities previously for abusing or neglecting her children.

A decision hadn’t been made about what criminal charges Merdy might face.

_______

Associated Press writer Michael R. Sisak contributed to this report.

___

This version corrects the gender of the infant to male, not female, as police official had erroneously reported.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Darrell Brooks sits in another court room after being removed from the first day of his trial for c...
Associated Press

Man charged in parade killings removes shirt before openings

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A Wisconsin man defending himself against homicide charges for allegedly plowing his SUV through a Christmas parade stripped off his shirt, sat with his back to the camera and stuck a sign he’d been given to signal objections down his pants Thursday before opening statements began in his trial. Prosecutors allege […]
11 hours ago
A medical attendant disinfects the rubber boots of a medical officer before leaving the Ebola isola...
Associated Press

US to begin screening travelers coming from Uganda for Ebola

WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States will begin screening travelers coming from Uganda for Ebola as an additional precaution aimed at trying to prevent an outbreak in the African country from spreading, the Biden administration said Thursday. With “no suspected, probable, or confirmed cases” of Ebola having been reported beyond Uganda, the risk in the […]
11 hours ago
Associated Press

Oklahoma authorities fatally shoot man threatening officers

CLAREMORE, Okla. (AP) — The Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation is trying to determine if a man who appeared to be threatening officers with a gun was actually armed when they fatally shot him this week, a spokesperson said Thursday. Two Claremore police officers and and a Rogers County deputy shot Bobby Joe Johnston, 40, […]
11 hours ago
FILE - Family and supporters of Tyre Sampson march and hold signs outside the Orlando Free Fall dro...
Associated Press

Florida drop tower will be taken down after teen’s death

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — A towering amusement ride in central Florida’s tourism district where a Missouri teen fell to his death will be taken down because of the accident, the owner said Thursday. The decision to remove the more than 400-foot (122-meter) ride which opened last December in Orlando’s International Drive district was directly linked […]
11 hours ago
Associated Press

UK nurses vote on strikes as cost-of-living squeeze worsens

LONDON (AP) — Britain’s biggest nurses’ union asked its 300,000 members Thursday whether they want to go on strike in a dispute over pay, and the U.K.’s electricity system operator warned of potential winter blackouts, in the latest evidence of the U.K.’s worsening energy and cost-of-living squeeze. Members of the Royal College of Nursing are […]
11 hours ago
FILE - Clark County Public Administrator Robert Telles, right, talks to Las Vegas Review-Journal re...
Associated Press

Judge temporarily blocks search of slain reporter’s devices

LAS VEGAS (AP) — A Nevada judge has granted a temporary restraining order that bars authorities from immediately searching the personal devices of slain investigative reporter Jeff German. The Las Vegas Review-Journal filed a request for the emergency order earlier this week, after officials investigating German’s killing asserted that they could search the devices as […]
11 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Quantum Fiber

How high-speed fiber internet can improve everyday life

Quantum Fiber supplies unlimited data with speeds up to 940 mbps, enough to share 4K videos with coworkers 20 times faster than a cable.
...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Ways to prevent clogged drains and what to do if you’re too late

While there are a variety of ways to prevent clogged drains, it's equally as important to know what to do when you're already too late.
(Courtesy Condor)...
Condor Airlines

Condor Airlines shows passion for destinations from Sky Harbor with new-look aircraft

Condor Airlines brings passion to each flight and connects people to their dream destinations throughout the world.
Police believe 3 children drowned by mother at NYC beach