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Prosecutors: Mom Stabbed 2 Children To Death In 'Ritualistic Incident'

BROCKTON (CBS) -- A Brockton mother killed two of her sons in a "ritualistic incident," prosecutors said in court Tuesday.

Latarsha Sanders was arraigned on two accounts of murder after her two young boys were found dead in a Prospect Street apartment.

Police said the 43-year-old acted alone when she stabbed her five-year-old and eight-year-old sons multiple times.

The eight-year-old boy was stabbed as many as 50 times, said prosecutors.

According to court documents, family members told investigators that Sanders had practiced Voodoo.

The District Attorney did not confirm that the deaths were Voodoo related.

Latarsha Sanders
Latarsha Sanders in court on February 6, 2018 (WBZ-TV)

A 911 call from a neighbor at about noon on Monday led investigators to the third-floor apartment. Officials said Sanders was found outside "distraught and combative." She was transported by EMS for a medical evaluation.

According to Plymouth County District Attorney Timothy Cruz, the murders occurred within the last 48 hours of them arriving at the scene.

"This was a gruesome, disturbing and heartbreaking crime," Cruz said.

The bodies were found under sheets in separate bedrooms, according to court documents.

brockton stabbing
Police sealed off the area outside the home on Prospect Street Monday afternoon. (WBZ-TV)

They were identified as Edson Brito, 8, and Lason Brito, 5.

"Sanders allegedly cleaned up the children, placed them in beds, and mopped up the crime scene. She never sought medical
attention for the boys. State Police located a kitchen knife left in the sink that is believed to be the murder weapon," said the District Attorney.

A statement from Brockton Public Schools was sent out midday on Tuesday saying in part, "The Brockton Public Schools administration, faculty, and staff is shocked and saddened at the tragic and senseless loss on Monday of two innocent, young lives. We grieve with their surviving family members and friends and offer our deepest condolences and prayers."

Crisis teams were available to students on Tuesday morning and will stay there as long as needed.

Sanders pleaded not guilty and is being held without bail. She is scheduled to appear in court again on April 9..

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