Wife Helped Army Husband Kill Children Before Double Suicide

Photo: Bob Owen /San Antonio Express-News This is the house in north San Antonio where investigators found the bodies Jared and Sheryll Harless and their four children. Police believe the couple committed suicide after killing the children.

San Antonio police said Friday they believe Army Staff Sgt. Jared Esquibel Harless and his wife, Sheryll, murdered their four young children and killed themselves two months ago.

The cause of death: Carbon monoxide poisoning.

Harless, 38, and his wife, Sheryll Ann, 36, were found in the back of an SUV in the garage of their Northwest Side home on June 4 along with their children, Esteban Lorenzo Harless, 4; Penelope Arcadia Harless, 3; Avielle Magdalena Harless, 1, and Apollo Harless, 11 months.

San Antonio Police Lt. Jesse Salame said investigators believe the couple both planned the killings.

Until now, Jared Harless had been suspected of killing his wife and the children.

Police aren’t sure of the motive, though Salame said it appeared “a combination of life stress that was exacerbated by some mental health issues, and the stress that is not uncommon with having children with special needs as well,” were major factors in the deaths.

Police arriving at 106 Red Willow, a two-story home in a gated subdivision said they saw a cryptic note at the front door that contained military jargon.

Investigators haven’t yet released the contents of the note.

The Harlesses had moved from Washington state to San Antonio last January, and were known by neighbors to be quiet and even reclusive.

This is a developing story and will be updated.

SOURCE: Houston Chronicle – Sig Christenson