DRUMMONDVILLE, Que. - Sonia Blanchette, the depressed, divorced mother whose three young children were drowned on the weekend, still had not been interrogated as of Tuesday because of a suicide attempt.
Blanchette, 33, remained in hospital in this town an hour east of Montreal after, according to a QMI source, she overdosed on pills.
The bodies of Laurelie, 5, Loic, 4, and Anais, 2, were found Sunday afternoon in a duplex. All three children had been drowned.
The father, Patrick Desautels, briefly addressed reporters Tuesday afternoon and thanked supporters while acknowledging the family's ordeal.
"The pain that we're living through is impossible to explain," said Desautels. "You'll understand that there's currently a police investigation and for that reason I cannot answer your questions," he added before walking away.
Blanchette was alone in the residence at the time of tragedy despite the fact that all of the visits with her children are supposed to be supervised. The children's grandmother found their bodies after accompanying the young ones on one such visit. Blanchette had lost custody of the children to Desautels last year, and she currently faces a kidnapping charge related to an earlier incident involving the youngest child.
In an interview with QMI, the grandmother, Nicole Grenier, would not discuss her role in the visitation arrangement. She added that she hasn't been allowed to visit her daughter.
"I was told that the first people to talk to her will be the police, no one else."
The entire community rallied behind the family Tuesday, with a local restaurateur lending his establishment for the news conference while others have donated cash.
The children will be buried on Saturday, and several people had created a memorial at the family home, leaving bouquets and stuffed toys.
Blanchette had lost a 2 1/2-year custody battle to her ex-husband and police say she's an "important witness" in the deaths of her children.
One neighbour said Blanchette was depressed and rarely saw her children, who lived with their father.
But Nancy, a friend of the mother, said she was "a good person."
"I would have helped her. I wouldn't have let that go. I have a little boy myself," Nancy said.
"She was a nice girl and she loved her children. It's a shock for everyone."