Ana L. Casas

Man kills wife, 3 kids after argument over chores

Police say the couple's three daughters -- ages 10, 4 and 20 months -- were strangled

December 15, 2005

FORT WAYNE, Indiana (AP) -- A man accused of killing his family told police he beat and strangled his wife and killed their three young daughters after the couple argued about household chores, according to court documents.

Police found Simon Rios, 33, on the front porch of his home after getting a suicide call early Tuesday. Inside, they discovered blood in the living room and Rios' wife and their three children dead in a bedroom.

Rios pleaded not guilty Wednesday to four preliminary counts of murder and two counts of moving a body. He was jailed without bond.

Autopsies showed the girls -- ages 10, 4 and 20 months -- had all been strangled. Their mother, identified as Ana L. Casas, died of a blow to the head and strangulation, the coroner said.

Rios told police he and his wife argued after she arrived home from work about 1:30 a.m. Tuesday, according to a probable cause affidavit. He said he hit her with a steel pipe, then strangled her with an extension cord, the affidavit states.

He then strangled one of the girls with his hands and used an extension cord to kill the other girls, according to the affidavit.

Neighbor Nancy Gater said Simon Rios worked at a factory but had lost his job this year.

The bodies were found a day after authorities searched the neighborhood for clues to the disappearance of a 10-year-old girl. Police spokesman Mike Joyner said that police did not find a connection between the cases when they questioned Rios, but that he is a possible suspect.

Rios had a previous conviction in Allen County for misdemeanor domestic battery in 2003, but friends said they had seen no signs of trouble in the family.

Michael Guzman, who described Rios as a friend, said he had never heard Rios raise his voice to his children or speak ill of his wife.

"Everybody who knows him loves the guy," he said.

See posts on her dear children Liliana K. Rios Casas, Katherinne G. Rios and Thannya Karolinna Rios.


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