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Three brothers - Alexander, eight, Juan, nine, and Luis, 10 - were allegedly stabbed to death by their father who then tried to kill himself
Three brothers found dead inside a car outside an elementary school in south Los Angeles were allegedly stabbed by their father who then tried to kill himself.
The boys - Alexander, eight, Juan, nine, and Luis Fuentes, 10 – were found in an SUV parked outside Dolores Huerta Elementary School on Wednesday morning.
Their father was found with stab wounds at the front of the vehicle and taken to hospital in a critical condition.
Police have yet to identify him, but he was named by relatives as Luis Fuentes and is now in custody. He is the only suspect in the killings, authorities said.
Tributes to the boys were left at the scene outside Dolores Huerta Elementary School in south Los Angeles
At a vigil for the children on Wednesday evening, grieving family members lay pictures, candles and toys at the site where their bodies had been found earlier that day.
Their cousin Rene Chanquin told KTLA ‘What can prepare you for three little kids that you spent every Christmas with, being killed that way.’
The children's mother died of natural causes in 2008, according to their cousin Rene Chanquin. Pictured: the boys at her grave
Los Angeles Police Department investigators work at a crime scene where the children were been found dead
Police have yet to identify the father, but he is now in custody and is the only suspect in the killings
‘We will miss them so very much and it hurts us to know that they will never live to see another Christmas or celebrate another birthday.’
He added that the family hope to bury the children alongside their mother, who died in 2008 of natural causes.
A passer-by reported finding the man and children in the car Wednesday morning around 7:15am on the 300 block of East 32nd Street.
John Sorrentino, who owns a furniture store nearby, told KTLA it was a ‘pretty difficult’ sight and one of the boys ‘had blood all over him’.
A knife was also recovered at the scene.
Police said that the children have a stepmother, who is unharmed, and in the process of being interviewed.
The three brothers were found stabbed to death inside a parked SUV in south Los Angeles on Wednesday
The man was found at the front of the SUV with a stab wound and was taken to the hospital in critical condition
She was at work when the incident occurred and another child was in daycare at the time.
There was no record of a custody dispute over the children.
At a press conference yesterday, Los Angeles Police Officer Aareon Jefferson said the children had stab wounds but it was too early to determine whether that was what caused their deaths.
LAPD Chief Charlie Beck called it a 'gruesome sight', adding that the children had suffered multiple stab wounds.
Beck added: 'It's a sad day in L.A. These are incidents that have scarred not only a community but the first responders that have to handle them.'
Law enforcement sources told NBC News that the father had stabbed the three children before attempting to commit suicide outside Dolores Huerta Elementary School.
Police say the boys did not attend the school, but were registered elsewhere in the Los Angeles Unified School District.
LAPD Chief Charlie Beck (pictured second from left) called it a 'gruesome sight', adding that the children had suffered multiple stab wounds