A mother who was found dead along with her two teenagers in West Palm Beach had sent a text message saying she would kill her kids and herself, her ex-husband said in a 911 call released Tuesday.
Richard Berman’s ex-wife, identified by family and friends as Jennifer Berman, lived at a home in the 200 block of Pershing Way with their 16-year-old son Alex and 15-year-old daughter Jacqueline.
The bodies of the woman and the two teenagers were found fatally shot in an apparent murder-suicide Monday morning, police said.
There are no suspects because it appears to be a murder-suicide, police said.
On Monday morning, Richard Berman called police, concerned for his children's safety.
“She sent me an email that she did the best thing for our family. And then she sent her cousin a text that she was going to kill the kids and herself,” Richard Berman said in the 911 call.
Later in the call, Berman described seeing his son. On the phone with the operator, Berman quietly cursed, before going on to explain his son’s condition.
"I was just touching his head. He wasn't waking up. His alarm was on, and there was blood in his ear,” Berman said.
A neighbor who also entered the home told the operator that when she saw the condition of the mother upstairs, she had to run back downstairs.
The children were talented musicians who attended the Alexander W. Dreyfoos School of the Arts in West Palm Beach.
"It’s shocking that it happened but I think they had a lot of stress in their life,” neighbor Sheren Kirk told WPTV. “There’s been a divorce, there’s been some financial problems."
The couple's divorce was finalized last month. Citing court records, The Palm Beach Post chronicled the couple's volatile relationship. It was a divorce process that started in 2008. The paper reported that in May, Jennifer Berman filed for temporary alimony and child support. Court documents claim Richard Berman refused to pay for toilet paper, and would buy food and supplies for himself – allegedly keeping them where the family could not access them.
According to the paper, Jennifer Berman had allegedly also asked a judge to kick her ex-husband out because of extreme emotional abuse in the home.
Grief counselors were at the teens' school Tuesday, where classmates remembered the siblings by wearing white.