1. Details emerging on Cairns deaths
Details are emerging on the mother charged with murdering eight children in Cairns – seven of whom were her own.
Mersane Warria, 37 whose full legal name is Raina Mersane Ina Thaiday was charged yesterday at a bedside hearing in hospital.
She is accused of killing seven of her nine children, either on Thursday night or Friday morning, along with her niece.
She is not expected to appear in Cairns Magistrates Court this morning when the matter is heard.
News Limited reports that her neighbours have said she had displayed bizarre behaviour recently giving fiery sermons on the street and saying that mobile phones were the “work of the devil”.
It is reported that she had cut off all technology from her family home and even threw out the television.
Preliminary autopsy reports have shown the horrific nature of the injuries to the children.
Police will allege some of the eight suffered multiple stab wounds. It is alleged one child sustained at least 12 knife wounds to the front and 10 more on the back.
News Limited reports that police yesterday declined to comment on whether the drug ice had played a role in what could have been a possible psychotic episode.
A fund is being set up to assist with funeral costs for the children. Anyone wishing to help can call 1800 54 33 54.
2. US Police officer shootings
President Barack Obama has condemned the killing of two New York City police officers yesterday.
Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu were shot dead while on patrol by 28-year-old Ismaaiyl Brinsley who then killed himself.
The head of the New York police said the men had been “targeted for their uniform”.
NBC News reports that the attacker, identified as Ismaaiyl Brinsley, 28, shot and injured his ex-girlfriend before the killings and had posted anti-police messages on social media.
The tragic shootings come weeks after a grand jury decided not to indict any New York police department officer in the chokehold death of Eric Garner, a black man who died when white police officers tried to arrest him for selling cigarettes.
The decision sparked protests in New York and other cities across the US.