KDPS: Mom who drove kids into river tried to poison first

Kalamazoo and Battle Creek

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WOOD) — Relatives of a Grand Rapids mother who drove into the Kalamazoo River, killing her 9-year-old daughters and herself, say she tried to kill herself and poison her twin daughters two months earlier, a police report states.

The investigative report 24 Hour News 8 obtained through the Freedom of Information Act indicates the mother of Ineza McClinton told investigators about the incident after the June 17 deaths of McClinton and her daughters, Angel and Faith.

The Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety’s report states McClinton’s mother said that two months before, her 44-year-old daughter tried to commit suicide by overdosing on pills. Intervening family members found out McClinton simultaneously tried to poison her daughters by making them drink anti-freeze-laced juice, but the 9-year-old girls saw her do it, so they didn’t drink the toxic mix, the report states.

According to the report, McClinton’s mother said a report about the attempted suicide and poisoning was filed with the Grand Rapids Police Department. However, a copy of that GRPD report obtained by 24 Hour News 8 never mentions the kids being given anti-freeze.

The GRPD report said McClinton told officers she was not suicidal but tired because her doctor changed her medication, moving her off Seroquel.

McClinton’s mother told Kalamazoo officers her daughter took medication for schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and anxiety. Another relative said McClinton appeared “stressed” when she saw her hours before she drove into the river.

McClinton’s mother said McClinton took her daughters and two granddaughters to Kalamazoo to visit. She said the last time she talked to McClinton, she said she was heading back to Grand Rapids.

McClinton’s son said she came from Grand Rapids to visit him in Kalamazoo the day of the murders. He told Kalamazoo investigators they smoked marijuana and drank alcohol outside his home before he went to visit “his girl’s place.” The next thing he mentioned to police was the phone call from McClinton’s granddaughters who said she had dropped them off and they needed a ride.

The woman who spotted the tearful girls on the corner of Walbridge and E. Paterson Street said they told her McClinton “drove into the ocean.” She stopped and took them to a nearby Walgreens to meet up with police and an uncle.

The Office of Children’s Ombudsman previously told 24 Hour News 8 there is an open investigation into Children’s Protective Services prior interactions with the family in question. That means McClinton and her two kids had some sort of contact with CPS in the last two years. The office will investigate to see if CPS could have or should have done anything differently that may have prevented this tragedy.

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