A Florida mother killed her two children and then herself in an apparent murder-suicide after losing a child custody battle with her ex.
Brandy Hutchins allegedly murdered her 10-year-old son and 19-year-old daughter before turning the gun on herself inside the family’s mobile home after a judge ordered she turn her son over to his father who lives in Maine, the Polk County sheriff said Sunday.
Hutchins was ordered to relinquish custody of her son by 6 p.m. Friday, but never showed up for the appointment according to the sheriff.
The sheriff’s office was notified that the mom had violated the court order and its deputies worked through the weekend to find the boy, identified as Aiden Hutchins by his father.
Sadly they found the child’s lifeless body along with his half-sister’s and mother’s in a Lake Wales home Sunday afternoon, Sheriff Grady Judd said.
“Brandy Hutchins… from every indication in our investigation now has murdered her 10-year-old child and her 19-year-old child — murdered them and then subsequent to that, she shot herself,” Judd said during a press conference. “I can’t imagine a more horrific set of circumstances.”
He added that the mother had no criminal history or indication of potential violence.
“There was no indication that there should be any violence,” Judd said.
The 19-year-old had a different father than her 10-year-old brother and was not a part of the custody battle, according to the sheriff.
The boy’s father announced his son’s murder in a social media post after initially reporting him missing.
“It is with a heavy heart that I am writing this to give everyone an update about my son Aiden Hutchins who was taken by his mother on August 25, 2023 who decided to murder him. He was killed by her today, August 27, 20203,” the heartbroken dad wrote in a post Sunday. “He will forever be in my heart and did not deserve this.”
Judd said the sheriff’s office deals with hundreds of thousands of court orders and rarely ever sees such violence.
“My heart breaks for all of the family,” he said. “We’re devastated for this beautiful 10-year-old child — all because mom did not want to turn the child over to the rightful father pursuant to a court order.”