A gunman left two toddlers stranded in a car overnight after he allegedly fatally shot their mother and the man she was with as temperatures dropped to around freezing in a North Carolina city, according to reports.
Eric Coley, 42, was arrested and charged with the double homicide, Rocky Mount police said in a press release.
Police were called to the parking lot of a construction company Thursday morning after employees showing up to work saw the adult victims inside the parked car – and two small surviving children in the backseat, officials said, according to WITN. The children were of “toddler age,” police said, according to WTVD.
The two kids were not harmed, but still taken to the hospital because they were stuck in frigid temperatures for hours, police reportedly said. They were later released to relatives.
The two fatal victims were identified as Devone Brown, 28, and Destiny Wiggins, 24, according to WRAL. Cops said the pair were shot and killed.
The two children during the horrific crime were Wiggins’ daughters, her sister told CBS 17.
“Destiny is one of eight kids of my mother Donna Wiggins. She has four children, two girls and two boys,” sister Breana Wiggins told the station.
Coley was charged with two counts of first-degree murder and possession of a firearm by a felon, cops said. He was remanded to Nash County jail and his first court appearance was scheduled for Monday morning.
The investigation is ongoing and police said more charges could be added.
It’s unclear what led to the shooting.