Four children, all under age 10, and their 37-year-old mother were brutally hacked to death in a murderous rampage at an apartment in Brooklyn, N.Y. on Saturday night, and a family member is currently being held as the main suspect.
The Associated Press reported that the five victims were found in Brooklyn's working class Sunset Park neighborhood, unconscious and unresponsive. Emergency responders pronounced a 1-year-old boy and two girls ages 7 and 9 dead at the scene. The mother and a 5-year-old boy were pronounced dead at Brooklyn hospitals.
Police identified the victims as Qiao Zhen Li, 37; Linda Zhuo, 9; Amy Zhuo, 7; Kevin Zhuo, 5; and William Zhuo, 1, according to CNN.
Neighbors who witnessed the aftermath of the heartbreaking massacre told the New York Daily News that it was like a horror movie.
"I saw the mom and the kid, just covered in blood," said neighbor Kenny Lin, 33, who lives near the death house. "They were both on stretchers."
Rencong Lee, 26, said she witnessed a distraught woman who appeared to be about 40 years old and possibly a relative of the dead being comforted by a friend.
"She said, 'My family was cut ... there's so much blood,'" said Lee. "She was crying, I think she was panicking… (Then) I saw them put a body in the ambulance," Lee added.
A 25-year-old man, preliminarily identified as the mentally troubled cousin of the children, was subdued and arrested at the apartment with bare, blood-soaked feet, according to the New York Post. Authorities reportedly seized a machete and scissors from the scene as evidence as well.
"He (the suspect) was bizarrely calm," a neighbor, who asked to remain unidentified, told the New York Post. "He was completely composed and answering their questions — even as they brought out two black bags with the kids in them," the neighbor noted.
"He was still calmly answering their questions as the stretcher with the bloody child was rolled right past the car…Again, he seemed unfazed," explained the neighbor.
Preliminary reports indicate that it was the dead mother's sister, who was present but left unharmed during the attack, who called the police. The children's father also reportedly came home from work when it was all too late.
The New York Daily News reported that police had to deliver the heartbreaking news to the father through a Chinese interpreter.
"The father was freaking out," neighbor May Chan told the Daily News. "He just came home from work and saw the police and they told him. He was hysterical."
"I always see (the kids) running around here," Chan added. "They run around by my garage playing. They run up and down screaming. They're little kids ... that's so heartbreaking. Innocent kids, my God."