Three "perfect" children have been found dead at their home with police saying they believe their own mum slaughtered them before killing herself.
Katie Perinovic, 48, was found dead alongside her children Claire, seven, Anna, five, and Matthew, three, at their home in Tullamarine, Melbourne, Australia on Thursday, January 15.
Mrs Perinovic's husband Tomislav raised the alarm with a harrowing Triple Zero call, with detectives saying they do not believe he was involved in the incident, and he has been released without charge.
In a statement, they said: "Investigators do not believe the 48-year-old man was involved in the incident and police are not looking for anyone further in relation to the matter.
"Homicide Squad investigators have formed the preliminary view that the 42-year-old woman is responsible for all four deaths and on completion of their investigation, a report will be provided for the consideration of the coroner."
Family friend Marie Groves told the Herald Sun she was devastated by the deaths: "I can’t believe it – those babies."
At a recent birthday party for Ms Groves’ daughter, Perinovic was "unusually withdrawn and quiet".
"On November 29, I got her to come across and help celebrate my daughter’s birthday with my kids," Ms Groves told NCA NewsWire.
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"She was only there for a short period … her two older girls were very similar to my younger daughters, they were chatting and laughing – typical seven-year-olds, they were beautiful kids.
"On that day she did seem to be a bit withdrawn – that was not usual – she was very quiet … in retrospect maybe that was a pointer?"
Ms Groves said she didn’t know Katie’s husband, Tomislav, very well as he was "working all the time".
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The friend added the last time she’d seen her neighbour had been before Christmas when she also seemed "a bit quieter than usual", but nothing seemed out of the ordinary.
Former colleagues of Perinovic, who was a practising physiotherapist, told the Herald Sun they were devastated to learn of the deaths.
It is understood she left the Glenroy Physiotherapy clinic unexpectedly about three months ago.
Acting Deputy Commissioner Robert Hill said police would work to support the families of those involved and ensure they get the help they need.
"I know there will be many people in the community struggling to understand and come to terms with this tragedy," he said.
"This has also been an incredibly difficult time for both the police and paramedics, who responded and attended the scene yesterday."
He went on: "This has been an incredibly heart-wrenching experience for all concerned."
For emotional support, you can call the Samaritans 24-hour helpline on 116 123, email [email protected], visit a Samaritans branch in person or go to the Samaritans website.
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