On the night of Jan. 20, 2020 Rachel Henry killed all 3 of her young children at her home near 24th Street and Southern Avenue in Phoenix Arizona.
According to the report, Rachel Henry admitted to smothering all three of her kids, one by one, even singing to some of them as she covered their mouths and noses.
Henry, 22, faces three counts of first-degree murder. Police say she admitted killing her 3-year-old son Zane Henry, her 1-year-old daughter, Miraya Henry, and her 7-month-old daughter Catalaya Rios. The young children were found dead inside the family’s home.
Rachel admitted to smothering each child, starting with the one year old.
HER 1-YEAR-OLD DAUGHTER
She began with her 1-year-old daughter, Miraya. “Rachel was playing with the one-year-old female and was wrestling on top of her. Rachel felt the one-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”. Miraya would have turned 2 next week.
Police say Henry told them Miraya was kicking at her during the act, and that her three-year-old son, Zane, was yelling at her, in an attempt to get her to stop. He even reportedly tried to stop his mom by punching her to no avail.
Rachel knew she had killed the one-year-old female when she stopped kicking.
HER 3-YEAR-OLD SON
The police report goes on to say that Rachel then “chased the three year old male” Later identified as Zane Henry but was reportedly “interrupted” when the other relatives returned home. One of those relatives then spent some time playing with the little boy.
But a short time later, Rachel took the three year old male into a back bedroom where she changed his underpants. Once there, she placed Zane “on the floor of the bedroom, straddled him with one of her legs and placed her hand over his nose and mouth.” She then “used her weight on the 3-year-old male.
Henry was singing to the three-year-old male as Zane was scratching her chest and pinching her while she placed her hand over his nose and mouth.
HER INFANT DAUGHTER
Finally, Henry moved on to her infant daughter, Catalaya Rios, to whom she first gave a bottle. “Rachel fed the seven month old female a bottle in her bedroom until she fell asleep. Rachel sang her a song as she placed her hand over Catalaya’s face and impeded her breath. Rachel sang to the seven-month-old female until she became unconscious and died,” states the police report.
Rachel then proceeded to place all of the children in a position on the living room couch as if they were taking a “nap”. She also reportedly did not tell any other family members in the home what had just happened.
Police say they first received an “unknown trouble call” from a relative of the children. According to the police report, the woman who had called 911 reported that three children under the age of three were dead.
When police arrived at the home, they were greeted by three adults — Henry, the children’s father, and another relative, Sgt. Mercedes Fortune of the Phoenix Police Department said. According to police, the kids were in a living room area near the front door. “We didn’t have to go look for the children,” Fortune said. All three of the children were unresponsive. Officers performed CPR on them. Fire crews then arrived at the home and paramedics also provided first aid. But sadly, all efforts were unsuccessful, and the children were pronounced dead.
Henry was later arrested and booked into jail on three counts of first-degree murder. She’s being held on a $3 million bond.
Why such a high bail? During Tuesday’s initial court appearance, county prosecutors voiced their concerns about the fact that Henry could be a flight risk. They said she has minimal ties to Arizona, and has reportedly only lived in our state since June of 2019. “Her ties are to Oklahoma, which is where she is from,” stated the prosecutor.
Meantime, police will continue to investigate what led up to this tragedy. Phoenix police say they’ll be looking into whether postpartum depression might have been a factor. “It’s mind-blowing, it’s shocking. It’s one of those things where you start asking yourself, why didn’t she reach out for help?” said psychologist Dr. John Delatorre. “Could it be mental illness? Absolutely it could be mental illness. Did this mother feel as if she had no choice? Either way these poor children absolutely did not deserve such treatment.
Henry “had a methamphetamine addiction and had been acting strange the past several days.” During her first court appearance, they also learned that her kids had been removed from her home in the past. “My understanding is that her kids had previously been removed from her home by DCS related to her drug addiction,” a county prosecutor told the judge. Arizona’s Family has confirmed that her kids had been taken away from her in Oklahoma. So this wasn’t the first sign that these kids were in harms way. Unfortunately she must’ve been acting sane to get them back but Manic people aren’t always manic. The drugs defiantly could’ve contributed. I will update as the case proceeds and information becomes available to me.
A grand jury charged 22-year-old Rachel Henry on Monday with three counts of first-degree murder, the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office said. The next hearing on the case is Tuesday, Feb. 4.