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UPDATE: Kids Find Parents in Homicide, Suicide

Police said that the couple had marital problems.

Update: May 2, 2012 at 1:23 p.m.

Four children returned to their North Bellmore home after school Tuesday afternoon to find their mother dead on the floor of the laundry room and their father locked in an upstairs bedroom.

Thomas Hayes, 43, stabbed his wife, Sherrelle Hayes, 44, and then hung himself, police said.

According to Homicide Det. Sgt. Greg Lesmeister, the couple's 13-year-old daughter was the first to arrive home and her father only spoke to her from behind the door. Lesmeister said Hayes instructed her to pick up her other siblings - ages 10, 9 and 7 - from school. When she and three other siblings returned to the Smith Avenue home, they could not get in the front door.

The children gained entry through another door and found blood on the kitchen floor. They then followed the blood trail and found their mother lying on the laundry room floor, according to police. They also saw a note and allegedly notified police.

The 13-year-old then went upstairs to the bedroom to look for her father, but the door was locked.

When police arrived on the scene, they found Sherrelle Hayes dead with three stab wounds and found Thomas Hayes in the upstairs bedroom, hanging from the ceiling. Thomas Hayes was transported to Nassau University Medical Center where he died.

Authorities said that they removed numerous items from the house, but they have not determined what Thomas Hayes used to stabbed his wife.

Police said that Sherrelle Hayes, who worked for an insurance company in Jericho, took her children to school that morning and then returned home. Thomas Hayes worked nights as a construction engineer in Manhattan, police said.

Neighbors told police that they heard the two arguing early that morning.

"We believe that Sherrelle Hayes was killed hours before she was found," Lesmeister said.

Lesmeister also said that there were problems in the Hayeses' marriage.

"There is absolutely some indication of it," he said. "There was a marital discord and some legal troubles."

Thomas Hayes was involved in an open larceny case involving the federal government and possibly made a plea not to serve jail time, Lesmeister said.

Neighbor Mike Sudlow told Patch that his 11-year-old daughter plays with the family's second oldest child. Sudlow said he has known the family for more than 10 years.

"I’m in shock," he said. "They seemed to be the nicest couple. If you were looking for your kids, you went straight to their house because all of the kids played there."

Liz Berger May 02, 2012 at 01:06 AM
Hoping Heaven has these parents in their hands, this is a shock to all. May God be with the children every day of their lives.
Debbie Dombrowski May 02, 2012 at 01:22 AM
Just a Heartbreaking Tragedy!!! Prayers for the children!!
Bellmore Mom May 02, 2012 at 02:13 AM
My prayers for those little angels.
Steven Wood May 02, 2012 at 02:39 AM
May God watch over those precious children.
Roseanne Lombardo May 02, 2012 at 02:49 AM
I am heartbroken for these poor children, God bless them and watch over them.
Lindafromqueens May 02, 2012 at 03:08 AM
These poor children. What is wrong with people.
David Falcon May 02, 2012 at 06:33 AM
this family was great friend with me the shock from this made my heart shatter the kids are always the best the parents never showed anger they were a happy couple and for the kids it a terrible sight to see i give my full respect to the kids and hope the parents are in a great place right now
Patty F. May 02, 2012 at 11:40 AM
God Bless these children!! My heart is broken for them! I pray that they have the strength and courage to get through this! I hope they know their mom will be watching over them forever!
MaryJane May 02, 2012 at 12:45 PM
Praying for the children.. there must have been more to this than we all could ever know, but at any cost the children are the ones to suffer. How sad very,very sad.
Denise May 02, 2012 at 01:37 PM
This is so sad! Those poor children will be scarred for life after coming home to find your mother dead and to know the father killed himself. They will definitely need some form of therapy. Hope they have family that could take care of them. My thoughts and prayers are with the family. Denise
Madona Cole-Lacy May 02, 2012 at 03:02 PM
It will take a good village to raise these perplexed and courageous kids. The support of family, school, neighbors, friends, community organizations and well-wishers would have to step up to the plate and support these children. God always looks out for his little angels and speaks to the hearts of his big ones too! This is yet another instance of how the problems and decisions of grown-ups can impact the lives of children tremendously. According to initial report, I gather that "no one saw this coming". My comment to that is , the couple did! Is it that we as a society still have a long way to go in engendering swift action and response for our own people when it comes to the matters of the 'heart and mind'?. There is no shame in seeking help when you find yourself in a tight spot. Do not worry about what people will think of you. Our children need us for reasons too many to list here. I believe we all get the picture. Organizational help and community outreach must by now in this 21st Century be easily accessible in all communities . Finally, let us not underestimate our own role in making this community a healthier place for all.
Mitch May 03, 2012 at 03:20 PM
Sad story.
Mitch May 03, 2012 at 03:28 PM
Newsday reported that the Mom has had a boyfriend for the past few months- This probably was not easy on the husband. I wonder how the Mom's boyfriend feels about this knowing he may have played a major role in this tragedy by messing around with a married woman.
Susan May 03, 2012 at 07:14 PM
I feel very sad for the kids. God will watch over them along with the love from family and friends
Susan May 03, 2012 at 07:18 PM
In response to Mitch who really cares if she had a boyfriend. This obviously had alot more in depth with eachother im sure financially and who know what else. People need to think about the children and stop being selfish but at the same time there frame of mind isnt in the right place. He could have seeked help getting through the separation and not having to take the childrens mothers life. If he felt the need to do that to himself then he should have done it elsewhere where the children didnt have to be subjected to this. Bottom line is now you have these 4 young children with both parents gone....extememly hurtful for them.
ellen May 03, 2012 at 10:51 PM
too sad for words. My prayers go out to the 4 children and family and friends left behind to pick up the pieces and try to make their life meaningful!
bellmore mom May 03, 2012 at 11:01 PM
May God watch over these four innocent children
Mitch May 04, 2012 at 03:04 PM
I agree Susan......terrible story all the way around. Obviously this man was a mental wreck and just wasn't thinking clearly when he committed this horrific act. Aside from all his financial problems, knowing his wife was running around with another man probably didn't sit too well with him at a time when he probably needed her support the most. Real men don't mess with other guys jobs nor their wives. All I'm saying is this boyfriend must feel terrible too.
Neighbor May 04, 2012 at 05:03 PM
I hope this guy burns for what he did to those children and to the community as a whole. Because of his selfish act I need to explain to my 7 year old that this piece of trash took the life of his wife and left his children with no parents. Is that something a 7 year old needs to learn? (Especially when she knows one of the children?) My sympathy lays only with the real victims in this mess....those 4 children.
Robin May 04, 2012 at 05:46 PM
So horrible to read this. Praying for the kids. We never know what goes on behind closed doors and what he should have done or she shouldn't have done is irrelevant. This obviously was not something planned and I hope these kids have good family or relatives to take care of them and help them through this. God bless these kids and all the pain and suffering they will go through.

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