PHOENIX (KPHO/KTVK/CNN) – Police said a mother has confessed to smothering her three small children to death, all of them under the age of four.
Court paperwork describes a horror scene at the Phoenix residence Monday night.
Rachel Henry, 22, was home with her children while their father and another relative were out.
A police report says she admitted to smothering each child, starting with her 1-year-old daughter.
“Rachel was playing with the 1-year-old female and was wrestling on top of her. Rachel felt the 1-year-old female’s breathing was obstructed but continued to impede her breath by placing her hand over the 1-year-old female’s mouth,” the police report states, as reported by KPHO.
Henry’s 3-year-old son yelled at her and punched her to get her to stop, according to the police report.
The report says she then chased after the boy, but was “interrupted” when her relatives returned home.
The report says one of the relatives spent time playing with the boy, but that a short time later Henry took the boy into a back bedroom, where she "placed the 3-year-old male on the floor of the bedroom, straddled him with one of her legs and placed her hand over his nose and mouth."
The report says she sang to the boy, who scratched and pinched her as she smothered him.
Police say Henry then gave her 7-month-old daughter a bottle until she fell asleep, then sang as she smothered her.
The report says Henry then laid each of the children down on the living room couch as if they were taking a nap.
"We've seen stuff happen and everything around here, but nothing like this,” said a neighbor. “It was just terrible.”
Henry was in court Tuesday, facing three counts of first-degree murder. She was given a $3 million bond.
"I don't have any money,” Henry told the judge. “I don't have a job or anything."
"It's a sizable amount, I acknowledge,” the judge answered. “I do think the size of the bond is appropriate, based on the accusations against you in these initial hearings."
Police said Henry has struggled with addiction.
According to investigators, family welfare services in Oklahoma took her children away because of her drug problem.
Henry’s friends in Oklahoma are trying to come to terms with how this could have happened.
"Her little boy was super sweet,” said a high school friend of Henry’s who asked not to be identified. “He was a little shy, but he was super sweet.”
The woman said she was good friends with Henry in high school in Oklahoma, but lost touch more than a year ago.
"She just never really showed emotion, never really cared about anything,” the woman said. “She was always crazy, but never seemed like that kind of crazy."
The woman said this isn’t the girl she grew up with.
"I'm disappointed, and I'm heartbroken,” she said. “I don't understand how she could do something like that.”