A California mother accused of drowning her 5-month-old and 2-year-old sons in the bathtub has been arrested, authorities said.
Courtney Williams, 26, was booked Thursday into Yuba County Jail on a murder charge, according to records.
The Yuba County Sheriff’s Office was called to her family’s Linda home at 11:45 a.m. by her husband, the father of her children, the agency said in a news release.
The father said he had returned home from work for lunch just before noon when his wife told him “she had hurt the children,” according to the release.
He found the boys “unresponsive in the bathtub full of water” and called authorities, officials said.
Deputies performed lifesaving measures, but both children were pronounced dead at the scene.
“At this time, detectives believe the apparent drowning of the boys was intentional,” the news release stated.
The investigation is in its early stages and is ongoing.
“The tragic loss of five-month-old Holden and his two-and-a-half-year old brother Ronin reverberates throughout our department and into the community,” Yuba County Sheriff Wendell Anderson said. “There are no words to adequately describe the sadness we feel for the family at this time.”
Some neighbors were shocked to learn of the tragedy.
Neighbor Heather Ronson told NBC affiliate KCRA of Sacramento, California, her kids would play with Ronin.
“He’s just a little tiny guy, and he’s got brown hair, and his bright red little face, and his little boots on, and out here riding his little bike. ‘Hi, hi,’ over the fence,” Ronson said. “Just a sweet little boy, and the fact that I’m never going to see him again is heartbreaking.”
Speaking on Williams and her arrest, Ronson said: “I just wish she would have come out and asked for help ... I would have done anything to help her.”
Lawyer information for Williams was not available early Friday morning.
Linda is a community located about 40 miles north of Sacramento.