Cops are investigating the possibility that the midwife who has been charged with strangling her two young children to death and attempting to kill her seven-month-old baby before trying to take her own life was suffering from postpartum anxiety.
Lindsay Clancy, 32, allegedly strangled her daughter Cora, five, and son Dawson, three, to death and tried to suffocate her baby son inside the family home before plunging from the second-floor window of their home in Duxbury, Massachusetts.
Her horrified husband, Patrick, 34, discovered Clancy lying unconscious outside their home when he returned from work at around 6pm on Tuesday and called 911.
Clancy and her seven-month-old son survived the apparent murder-suicide attempt and they are both being treated in hospitals in Boston. The mother-of-three, who is under police custody, will be arraigned on homicide charges after she is released.
Investigators are looking into the possibility that Clancy was suffering from postpartum anxiety. She was on leave from her job as a midwife Massachusetts General Hospital.
Lindsay Clancy, 32, (left) allegedly strangled her daughter Cora, five, (center right) and son Dawson, three, (center left) to death and tried to suffocate her baby son inside the family home before plunging from the second-floor window. Her horrified husband, Patrick, 34, (right) discovered Clancy lying unconscious outside their home in Duxbury
Five-year-old Cora and three-year-old Dawson were pronounced dead on arrival to hospital
Clancy and her seven-month-old son survived the apparent murder-suicide attempt and they are both being treated in hospitals in Boston. Pictured: The family home in Duxbury
Officers arrived at the family home on Tuesday after a frantic Patrick had discovered his wife unconscious on the ground below a second-floor window.
They discovered the three young children ‘unconscious’ upstairs ‘with obvious signs of trauma’. It appears they had all been strangled Plymouth District Attorney Timothy Cruz said.
Five-year-old Cora and three-year-old Dawson were pronounced dead on arrival to hospital while the seven-month-old baby was flown to Boston’s Children’s Hospital where he is alive and being treated by medics. Witnesses said the baby had been given CPR at the scene.
‘We’re all heartbroken right now,’ Lindsay Clancey’s father-in-law, Christopher Clancy, told the Boston Globe.
Clancy, a labor and delivery nurse at Massachusetts General Hospital, will be arraigned once she is released from hospital on charges including two counts of homicide and three each for strangulation and assault and battery with a deadly weapon for the deaths of her two children.
Clancy, pictured with Cora as a baby, is a midwife at Massachusetts General Hospital
Officers arrived at the family home on Tuesday after a frantic Patrick had discovered his wife unconscious on the ground below a second-floor window. Pictured: Patrick (center left), Lindsay (center right) and Cora (left) and Dawson (right) in 2021
Duxbury Police work at the scene where the two children were found dead and an infant injured on Wednesday
Clancy’s Facebook profile portrays a proud mother who often shared photos of her young, smiling family.
She wrote in one 2020 post: ‘So unbelievably grateful for this family and life.’
But in July, Clancy wrote about her previous struggles with postpartum anxiety, writing that six weeks after the birth of her third child she was feeling ‘dialed in’.
Sources told WBZ-TV I-Team that investigators are looking at the possibility that Lindsay Clancy was suffering from postpartum psychosis. She was on leave from her job as a midwife.
On Wednesday, two Plymouth women, Donna Jesse, who identified herself as an aunt of the children, and Rita Musgrove, who said she was their great grandmother, left a bouquet of pink, red, and white roses outside the family’s home.
‘They were beautiful, beautiful children,’ Jesse told the Boston Globe.
Musgrove added: ‘It’s pretty shocking’.
John Sullivan, a neighbor whose yard is adjacent to the back yard at 47 Summer St., said he got a call Tuesday night from his son who told him a woman ‘was laying down in the backyard.’
He said he rushed to his neighbor’s property where he saw first responders performing CPR on a baby outside
‘Everybody is in a state of disbelief, it is tragic, the whole neighborhood is trying to process this whole thing,’ Sullivan told CBS Boston.
In a press conference Cruz said of the family: ‘I cannot begin to fathom the pain, the depths of pain they must be feeling.
‘This is an unimaginable, senseless tragedy, and it is an ongoing investigation.’
Heartbreaking pictures show Cora, right and Dawson, left, smiling together. The siblings have been pronounced dead
Clancy and her seven-month-old son survived the apparent murder-suicide attempt and they are both being treated in hospitals in Boston. Pictured: Clancy pictured with her surviving child in a Facebook post from September 2022
Clancy pictured with her husband Patrick, 34, who called authorities after finding her lying unconscious outside their home on Tuesday evening
He told reporters: ‘I want to further commend the professionalism and the work of the Duxbury First Responders and the Mass state police.
‘I’m sure many of them will not forget what they saw last evening and I think we should all be grateful to the men and women that put a uniform on that are willing to do this difficult and challenging job.
‘When something like this happens there are obviously usually more questions than there are answers as we proceed forward we will give answers as we can.’
Duxbury Fire Chief Robert Reardon said the fire responders who rushed to the scene are also grieving.
‘To all those who responded, we care about you,’ Reardon said. ‘If you or a colleague is in need of support, please reach out.’
Cruz warned ‘nobody’s here to speculate’, adding ‘we’re well aware of the fact that anybody charged with a criminal crime is presumed innocence until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt’.
He wrapped up the conference by saying: ‘Certainly our hearts and condolences go up to the Clancy family’.
Cruz said they will now conduct autopsies to determine how the children died. Findings will be made public when a death certificate is issued.
The hospital where Clancy works said in a statement: ‘We are shocked and saddened to learn of this unthinkable tragedy. We extend our deepest sympathies to all those affected by these devastating events.’
In Duxbury, the Rev. Bill Ferguson from the Pilgrim Church told Boston 25 television station that eight churches had opened their doors to offer support to those in the community who need it. He said the tragedy was ‘hitting hard,’ especially for those who are parents of young children.
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