An Illinois man and his two children were found dead over the weekend in what police are calling a “senseless tragedy.”
According to Belvidere police, three victims were inside their Belvidere home in the 600 block of Union Avenue on Sunday, dead from apparent gunshot wounds. The victims have been identified as Andrew Hintt, 31, and his two sons, Benjamin and Sebastian Hintt, ages 7 and 5.
Hintt’s landlord called 911 after the children’s mother, who lives in a different home, contacted him and said she hadn’t heard from her family. Police found the bodies on Sunday night, along with four shell casings. The weapon hasn’t been located, police said.
Belvidere Police Chief Shane Woody said during Monday’s press conference that the deaths are being investigated as a triple homicide. He didn’t offer any suspect information.
“What I can tell you is that whoever conducted this horrific act is truly evil,” Woody said. “Beyond that, I can’t give you any additional information.”
Investigators are unsure why the incident happened, whether a burglary was in progress, or something else. Woody said the case is in its early stages and the investigation continues.
“My heart, as well as the community’s heart, goes out to the victims,” Mayor Clint Morris said, according to the Rockford Register Star.
“Obviously, this time of year it certainly puts a pall on Christmas time and the celebration that we just recently had but I’m confident that our police department will find the individual who committed this (crime).”
Woody said Hintt’s SUV, a gray 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trailhawk with Illinois license plate, CT92923, is missing from the home.
The Illinois State Police is working with Belvidere police on the case. Woody said more information will be released once the official autopsies are completed.
Meanwhile, a GoFundMe page has been set up to help the family with funeral and burial expenses.
Anyone with any information regarding the case should contact the Belvidere Police Department at 815-544-2135 or Boone County Crime Stoppers at 815-547-7867.
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[Feature Photo: Benjamin and Sebastian Hintt/GoFundMe]