Sat. May 25th, 2024

The Seminole County Sheriff’s Office in Florida is investigating the death of a mother and her two young twins, according to reports.

On Friday, Sheriff Dennis Lemma spoke to reporters at a news conference about what law enforcement says was an isolated murder-suicide.

According to the sheriff, early Friday morning, deputies with the department responded to a call from an eyewitness who “saw a motorist stop their vehicle on the crest on the [SR-417] bridge.”

The caller told officials that a woman seemed to slide out of the passenger window of her vehicle and jump into the St. Johns River in “what appeared to be an attempt at a suicide,” Lemma said.

Once deputies arrived at the scene, they saw “a woman that was floating,” Lemma said. The officials requested the assistance of two nearby fishermen, one of whom happened to be an off-duty Seminole County firefighter.

The victim was identified as 31-year-old Catorreia Hutto. She would have turned 32 years old on Oct. 29.

As the press conference continued, Lemma stated that Hutto had “no known prior history, whatsoever.” The sheriff spoke to reporters on the street she lived on with her two children, 5-year-old twins — Ahmed and Ava Jackson.

Deputies investigating Hutto’s death entered the home and found Ahmed and Ava, “who appeared at first to be sleeping.” They were later discovered to be deceased inside the home, Lemma said.

“Mom jumps off the bridge, commits what’s obviously now a suicide, and what looks to be a homicide that is contained within this house,” he added.

Lemma stated that deputies conducted a well-being check on the children but then exited to obtain a search warrant so that a more extensive search could be performed.

While inside the home, officials “saw no signs of trauma” to the children, which included “no pools of blood.” However, they did find a firearm on a bedroom floor of the residence and “some live rounds that were on the ground.”

According to Lemma, “There was not much food inside the house” and “there was not much furniture inside the house which looked like the family may have been struggling financially.”

He previously stated that Hutto’s home was built in partnership with Habitat for Humanity, but added that there was “no indication” that any of those factors played a role in Friday’s circumstances.

Hutto’s last communication was a phone call to her mother that “went unanswered,” per Lemma.

Officials spoke with Hutto’s mother, who told them she assumed the call came from one of the kids, and never thought to call back, Lemma said.

The Florida Department of Children and Families was also on the scene Friday and Lemma said the organization had no prior contact with Hutto or her children at the residence.

The sheriff stated that at this point in the investigation, there is no one they’ve spoken to that gave any inclination that Hutto was feeling suicidal, or homicidal, or in dire need of assistance.

Hutto’s mother told authorities that her daughter struggled with depression throughout her life, “but there’s been nothing to indicate that she may act out with this level of violence towards her children or commit suicide,” said Lemma.

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By Buffy Gunner

Independent Journalist + Business Owner | Lover of all things true crime. Mantra: Only YOU can be YOU. | Los Angeles Born | buffygunner@illicitdeeds.com

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