CLINTON, Ill. — A woman and her boyfriend were charged with first-degree murder Wednesday in the deaths of her three children, who drowned when their car plunged into a lake in September in what initially looked like an accident.
Sheriff Roger Massey would not say how the car went down a boat ramp into Clinton Lake, killing the 6-year-old, 3-year-old and toddler inside.
Massey said authorities knew what the motive was, but he would not provide details other than to say it did not involve life insurance money.
Maurice Lagrone Jr., 28, and Amanda Hamm, 27, were each charged with three counts of first-degree murder. They were arrested separately Tuesday and were being held on $5-million bail.
Deputies arrived at the lake in central Illinois on Sept. 2 within five minutes of receiving a 911 call from Hamm saying her children were in the water. The two suspects were on the lake shore when rescuers arrived and Hamm was crying hysterically, according to one eyewitness.
A public explanation was never offered for why the couple were at the lake.