DCF: Murdered Children Were In Intermediate Danger

By  //  March 25, 2015

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Jessica McCarty ATTEMPTED SUICIDE IN 2009

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Philip McCarty, 6, Christopher Swist, 5-months and Laci McCarty, 7, were tragically murdered last Friday night.

ABOVE VIDEO: Hundreds of residents came together inside Palm Bay Christian Church on Monday night to honor the lives of three children whose lives were taken too soon. Philip McCarty, 6, Christopher Swist, 5-months and Laci McCarty, 7, were tragically murdered last Friday night in an incident involving their mother, Jessica McCarty. Watch the highlights of the vigil with reactions by area residents. (Video by Zach Clark, SpaceCoastDaily.com)

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — A Palm Bay woman charged with killing her three children attempted suicide in 2009 following allegations that she stole a friend’s credits cards, according to a report released Tuesday by Department of Children and Families officials.

A child abuse investigator visited the home of Jessica McCarty after she allegedly texted a friend that she was going to kill herself, the report said.

Jessica Lacey McCarty

Jessica Lacey McCarty

McCarty told the investigator that she’d taken sleeping pills and muscle relaxers.

Investigators also spoke with the father of the children and their grandmother, who said McCarty struggled with depression and had attempted suicide two times previously.

The investigator felt the children were in intermediate danger and said they had inadequate supervision, but noted that their father and grandmother seemed like capable caregivers, according a report released Tuesday by child welfare officials.

The grandmother also said her daughter had recently been under investigation for credit card fraud, according to the report released by the Department of Children and Families.

The investigator felt the children were in intermediate danger and said they had inadequate supervision, but noted that their father and grandmother seemed like capable caregivers, according to the report.

Mike Carroll

Mike Carroll

The investigator gave the family a brochure, had them sign a safety plan and closed the case.

McCarty was also referred to and was receiving mental health services, a DCF spokeswoman said Tuesday.

DCF Secretary Mike Carroll has asked his top substance abuse and mental health expert to review the circumstances leading up to the killings.

ABOVE VIDEO: Palm Bay Police address the media with the latest information on the multiple homicide investigation of a mother, Jessica McCarty, that is charged with killing her three children. (SpaceCoastDaily.com video)

Jessica-Lacey-McCarty-580-1

Jessica Lacey McCarty, 33, of Palm Bay waived her right to attend a first court hearing on Sunday. (BCSO images)

RELATED STORY: Police Release Affidavit In Palm Bay Murder Case

UPDATE: March 23, 2015

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LEFT TO RIGHT: Philip McCarty, 6, Christopher Swist, 5-months and Laci McCarty, 7.

Christopher Swist, the 5-month boy attacked by his mother on Friday, was pronounced dead at approximately 7:30 p.m. Sunday, according toYvonne Martinez, Palm Bay Public Information Coordinator.

A prayer vigil is scheduled for 8 p.m. Monday night at the Palm Bay Christian Church, located at 344 Emerson Drive.

STAY TUNED TO SPACECOASTDAILY.COM FOR UPDATES

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ABOVE MAP: A prayer vigil is scheduled for 8 p.m. Monday night at the Palm Bay Christian Church, located at 344 Emerson Drive.

UPDATE: March 22, 2015

Palm Bay Child Murder Suspect Waives First Court Hearing

BREVARD COUNTY • SHARPES, FLORIDA – Jessica Lacey McCarty, 33, of Palm Bay on Sunday waived her right to attend a first court hearing to face charges of murdering two of her children, and attempting to murder her 5-month-old son.

McCarty was represented by a public defender and the judge set an arraignment for April 21.

Police identified the dead children as Laci McCarty, 7, Philip McCarty, 6, and the critically injured 5-month-old as Christopher Swist, who remains in critical condition at Florida Hospital.

Autopsies were conducted Sunday by the Brevard County medical examiner to determine how they died. Police have not said how they believe the children were killed.

According to authorities, the Department of Children and Families had encountered McCarty in the past.

McCarty was ordered held without bond and remains under medical watch at the Brevard County Jail, according to authorities.

STAY TUNED TO SPACECOASTDAILY.COM

ABOVE VIDEO: Yvonne Martinez, Palm Bay Public Information Coordinator, talks with SpaceCoastDaily.com’s Zach Clark about Friday evening’s multiple homicide in which an 7-year-old girl and her 6-year old brother were killed, and a 5-month old male siblings was critically injured.

UPDATE: March 20, 2015

Palm Bay Police Responds To 9-1-1 Calls Friday

At 5:57 p.m. Friday, emergency dispatchers received a 9-1-1 call from a woman claiming to have killed her three children in a home on Kenmore Street NW in Palm Bay.

When police officers arrived at the home, McCarty was in the front yard armed with a knife. She did not comply with repeated commands from officers to drop the knife, which led the officers to deploy several “less lethal” bean bag rounds to gain compliance, according to police.

Seconds later, emergency dispatchers received another 9-1-1 call from a man claiming to be the woman’s boyfriend and the father of one of the children. The caller reported his child was not breathing.

When police officers arrived at the home, McCarty was in the front yard armed with a knife. She did not comply with repeated commands from officers to drop the knife, which led the officers to deploy several “less lethal” bean bag rounds to gain compliance, according to police.

McCarty was then taken into custody.

The officers then located the three unresponsive children who were later transported to the hospital.

ABOVE VIDEO: Neighbors talk with SpaceCoastDaily.com’s Zach Clark about Friday evening’s multiple homicide in which an 7-year-old girl and her 6-year old brother was killed, and a 5-month old male siblings was critically injured.

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ABOVE MAP: At about 6 p.m. Friday, emergency dispatchers received a 9-1-1 call from a woman claiming to have killed her children in a home on Kenmore Street NW in Palm Bay.


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