Mother charged with murdering her two young children

Published: Nov. 23, 2021 at 2:22 PM CST
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MISSOULA, Mont. (KTMF) – A 34-year-old mother in Montana is facing murder charges for killing her 3- and 5-year-old children with a steak knife.

Neighbors said Leannah Gardipe and her kids had only lived in the community since the summer, but the children quickly made it their home.

“They were usually very busy riding their bikes, or catching bugs, or checking out the plant in the yard, or something like that,” neighbor Sandra Talbot said, adding that they were fun to watch.

Talbot said she only had positive interactions with the family.

“They were just happy kids, and their mother was always with them,” she explained.

Neighbors weren’t prepared for what happened Friday.

There were two phone calls that led police to Gardipe’s home. The first came from her mother and the second came from Gardipe, herself, saying she wanted to “report a murder.”

When police arrived, they found 5-year-old Namaus and 3-year-old Evelyn tucked in their beds.

Court documents say they had stab wounds on their throats and defensive wounds on their hands and fingers.

Now, neighbors are left grieving for the two children who made a mark on their lives in such a short amount of time.

“Yeah, there’s darkness everywhere. But there’s also light, so I’m going to remember the light,” Talbot said.

Gardpie’s children were previously taken away from her temporarily while she struggled with a mental health episode.

She told physicians she was hurting her children but later said that report was false and brought on by her mental health issues.

She told the children’s father she spent three weeks in a treatment center.

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