UPDATE (Saturday, Jan. 28, 2023): Patrick Clancy has issued his first public statement following the death of his three children.
The baby hurt in the tragedy this week Duxbury, Massachusetts, has died, prosecutors said Friday, bringing the death toll to three.
The 8-month-old died at 11:18 a.m. at Boston Children's Hospital, according to the Plymouth County District Attorney's Office. He was identified as Callan Clancy.
Callan had been hospitalized with what prosecutors initially described as "evidence of harm."
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Prosecutors didn't initially say how the baby boy is believed to have died, or if his mother would face new charges — officials had previously said they were seeking two counts of homicide and other charges against her in the deaths of the baby's siblings.
The Plymouth County District Attorney's Office announced earlier in the week that Lindsay Clancy is suspected of strangling her older children — identified as Cora, 5, and Dawson, 3. The 32-year-old Massachusetts General Hospital employee and Connecticut native also faces three counts of strangulation and three counts of assault and battery with a deadly weapon. At last check, she was in police custody in a Boston hospital.
The killings have rocked the South Shore community of Duxbury. First responders, community members and family are all desperately trying to process the tragedy that unfolded Tuesday night — and mourn the loss of children described as having a "beautiful life."
Duxbury Community Comes Together in Prayer
A vigil was held on Thursday night at the Holy Family Church, as people came together by candlelight to grieve the loss of the two children who died first.
One woman who went to the vigil was the mother of a firefighter who responded to the incident on Tuesday night. She said her 25-year-old son has had a difficult time.
"It really hit him hard," Debbie Heath said. "I hope he never sees anything like this again."
Duxbury's Fire Chief, Robert Reardon, issued a statement on Thursday morning saying that professional help was being made available to his town's first responders, as well as to neighboring communities — many of which assisted Tuesday night.
Duxbury Mother Charged
Prosecutors in Plymouth County made the announcement late Wednesday that an arrest warrant had been issued for Lindsay Clancy, who has been hospitalized this week, following a suicide attempt on Tuesday night that police reportedly responded to.
If you or someone you know needs help, please contact the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline by calling 988, call the National Suicide Prevention hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or reach out to the Crisis Text Line by texting ‘Home’ to 741741 anytime.
When they showed up at the home on Summer Street shortly after 6 p.m. — after being called by the woman's husband — they found Clancy, along with the three children, unconscious and with obvious signs of trauma, according to Plymouth County District Attorney Tim Cruz.
The two older children were pronounced dead at a hospital that night, Cruz said. The baby was taken by medical helicopter to a Boston hospital for treatment, according to authorities.
Cruz was asked Wednesday if the baby was harmed in an attempted strangulation, but the district attorney didn't specify beyond saying that "there is certainly evidence of harm to the child."
"Filicide is rare," said Dr. Gina Curcio at Salem State University. "It often gets a lot of media attention because it's so unthinkable."
Curcio teaches about women, the criminal justice system, and filicide, which is the act of killing one's own child.
"Obviously, it's still early in the investigation and we don't know what the motives are in this case, but I do see some similarities," said Curcio.
She says there are common themes that can be seen in cases like these, including mental health issues.
Postpartum Depression Questions
Many have been wondering what could possibly drive a mother to allegedly kill her children. Sources tell NBC10 Boston Clancy was living with postpartum depression.
Authorities have not said whether they're looking at that as a factor in her alleged crimes, but the tragedy has many speaking about a topic advocates say is not discussed nearly enough.
"It does seem like a pretty classic case of postpartum depression with potential psychosis," said Professor Kellie Wallace at Lasell University.
Wallace studies the criminalization of mental illness and she has also worked as a clinical therapist treating murderers and people with postpartum depression.
"If it is postpartum depression or psychosis, once those symptoms are stabilized, the reality of the fact she took her children's lives is going to be something she has to live with for the rest of hers," said Wallace.
Clancy Family in Mourning and Shock
The kids' great-grandmother, Rita Musgrove, said she talked with their mother at the home about a week ago and nothing seemed amiss.
"It's a pretty shocking thing, and it is heartbreaking," she said as she left flowers at the family's home.
Neither she nor an aunt of the children were yet able to process what happened.
"They were just beautiful, beautiful children. Well cared for — they were just beautiful, that's it. They had a beautiful life," aunt Donna Jesse said.