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Four bodies found in Mumbai flat with plastic bags pulled over their faces

A middle-aged couple and their 2 young children were found dead in family’s home in Wadala.

Written by Gautam S Mengle | Mumbai | Published: March 19, 2013 4:52:21 am

A middle-aged couple and their two young children were found dead in the family’s home in Bhakti Park,Wadala,Monday morning. All the four bodies had black polythene bags pulled over their faces. From the extent of decay,it appeared that they had been dead for at least a day and a half,police said.

Two cans of a liquid chemical — thought to be either chloroform or ether pending chemical analysis — were found nearby. The bodies of the woman,Elizabeth Anthony,45,and the couple’s children,Jason,12,and Vivian,4,had vests soaked in the chemical wrapped around their faces.

The body of the man,49-year-old Donatus Anthony,only had the polythene bag over its head. All were foaming at the mouth,according to the Wadala TT police.

Prima facie,police suspect that Anthony killed his wife and children before taking his own life. A preliminary probe had found that a civil law suit was on over the flat in which the family was living,and that Anthony had several debts,police said. They said they were probing if financial difficulties had led the family to enter into a suicide pact.

Anthony’s brother Anil,however,said he suspected murder. “There was no reason for my brother to kill himself. I think he has been murdered and we demand an inquiry into this,” he said.

Anil and his son Gracious,22,found the bodies on Monday morning. “They visited Donatus’s residence around 10 am. After repeatedly ringing the doorbell,Anil opened the door using his own latchkey and found all four lying dead on the bed in the bedroom. He locked the flat and came straight to the police station,” Senior Police Inspector Nagesh Jadhav of Wadala TT police station said.

Gracious had had dinner with the family on Friday. Anthony had told him that he might go out of town with his family for a few days,and that Gracious should come in and feed the fish,Jadhav said.

On Anil’s suspicions of murder,Assistant Commissioner of Police Rajdoot Rupawate (Sion division) said,“If it is murder,we will take action accordingly. We are keeping all possibilities in mind.”

Deputy Commissioner of Police,Zone 4,Dattatray Karale,said,“We found two one-litre cans of a chemical in liquid form near the bed,with ‘CH’ handwritten on them with a black marker. We have sent them for chemical analysis,although experts have given a preliminary opinion that the contents could be chloroform or ether.”

Police have registered an accidental death report (ADR) and are waiting for the autopsy reports.

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