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Police: Mother Suffocated Kids In Miramar Apartment

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) -- A 40-year-old mother from Philadelphia was charged after the bodies of her two children were found in a Miramar apartment.

Sophia Hines was taken into custody overnight and charged with two counts of premeditated murder.

Hines' husband had no idea she was in Miramar – thinking she was in New York visiting family.

"Well, they called me from Florida from somewhere and told me, her friend of a friend told me, and I didn't believe it at first," said Anthony Singleton, Hines' husband.

But Hines, her 3-year-old daughter and 7-month-old son were visiting a relative, Neisha Nettleford, and had been in town for a week.

It was at around 4:30 p.m. Wednesday when Nettleford received a call from Hines who said she had to "come home now," according to her arrest report.

When Nettleford arrived home at her efficiency, behind a home at 6115 SW 38th Street, she found both children unresponsive on the bed in the master bedroom.

"We received a 911 call, a medical emergency involving two children," said Miramar police spokeswoman Tania Rues.

CPR was attempted but the children were pronounced dead on the scene.

Danielle Foster lives in the home directly in front of the efficiency with her two children. Foster's mother said they were surprised by what had happened and the large police presence.

"It was rough when the officers first told me on arrival that it was criminal. I couldn't even get in the place," said Emma Copeland.

"They seemed happy, like there was nothing wrong," said neighbor Janae Greenway.

Anthony Singleton, who said he has " to forgive her" but  is "confused," told reporters he had no idea that she was in any way troubled.

"Don't understand why," said Antonique  Singleton, Hines' stepdaughter. "We don't see any real problems whereas though this could have happened."

During questioning, Hines admitted to suffocating her son, St. Leom by by putting a bed sheet over his mouths until he was no longer breathing, according to her arrest report. She then killed her daughter in the same manner, according to police.

Hines reportedly gave investigators no explanation for her actions.

A man she befriended recently in Miramar offered some insight

Palmer Assad showed up at the home a day after the tragedy to check on Hines.

He said the last time he spoke with her she was crying.

"She needed money to get back to Philadelphia," he said.

According to Assad, Hines' cousin told her she needed to leave because she was expecting her boyfriend from Jamaica.

He also said she was worried about her visa status and being forced to return to Jamaica

"If I had known she was going to kill those kids I would have taken them," he said.

The Philadelphia Department of Human Services (DHS) said it is now able to release very limited information about the children who have died.

A statement released by DHS Communications Director Alicia Taylor to CBS4 News read that the children "were both involved with DHS but were not in the Department's custody.  The children and their parents were receiving in home services by Turning Points for Children, a DHS Community Umbrella Agency. Those services include face to face contact with the family to address their particular issues.  We are saddened by this tragedy and our thoughts and prayers are with the family."

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