CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WWBT) – A community has erupted after a mother and her three young children were found shot dead in Chesterfield on Friday morning.
Tears of disbelief and grief overwhelmed the families who lived within walking distance of where it all happened.
“I’m so sorry these babies are gone,” neighbor Nicole Rogers-Powell said.
She said she was never aware of any issues involving the family, which makes it even more troubling.
“It’s sad. It’s really, really sad,” a neighbor said.
Chesterfield Police found JoAnna Cottle, 39, Kaelyn Parson, 13, Kinsey and Jayson Cottle, 4, shot dead inside their home on Laurel Oak Road.
Jonah Adams, 35, was arrested hours later in Waldorf, Maryland, in connection with the shooting. Police say he is the father of two 4-year-old children, who neighbors said were twins.
“The children ride bicycles. They come to the other neighborhood. They are all happy. It’s just sad that it had to happen,” said Candy Hirsh, who lived in the next street.
She remembers seeing the family for the last time on Halloween night.
“My granddaughter, like I said, she’s 2, walked up to them and gave them a hug. It was so precious. Mom was just sitting on the porch with them,” Hirsh said.
A family friend, who didn’t want to go on camera with NBC12, was visibly shaken by the loss.
She said JoAnna had just celebrated her 39th birthday in September.
“I’m so sorry. God knows I’m so sorry. I just wish this world wasn’t as bad as it is,” Rogers-Powell said.
The usually quiet neighborhood of Treemont was just in disbelief that something so tragic could happen so close to home.
“It’s scary. This [makes] you don’t want to live here anymore, to be honest,” Zshakira Squire said.
“You must have your children and grandchildren with you at all times. Never take a day for granted,” Hirsh said.
Police are still working to find what led to the shooting.
This is a developing story.
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