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Memphis News & Weather | Memphis, TN | WATN - localmemphis.com

Mother Identified In Fatal Stabbing Of 4 Children

Shelby County Sheriff Bill Oldham identified the mother accused of fatally stabbing 4 of her children as 29 year old Shanynthia Gardner.
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Shelby County Sheriff Bill Oldham identified the mother accused of fatally stabbing her four children as 29-year-old Shanynthia Gardner. 

The victims’ age ranged from 4 years old to a 6 months old.

During a news conference Saturday, Oldham said Gardner was being held in a “safe place” under SCSO custody. 

Gardner was charged with four counts of first degree murder associated with aggravated child neglect, four counts of first degree murder associated with aggravated child abuse, four counts of aggravated child neglect and four counts of aggravated child abuse. There may be additional charges.

According to the affidavit, Gardner had superficial cuts to her neck and wrists. She spoke to her husband, Michael Gardner, over the phone and admitted to killing the children.

Officers located the bodies of Yahzi, Sya, Sahvi and Tallen when they arrived at the scene. 

A witness told police the mother came out of the apartment with a large knife in her hand and then re-entered. 

Sheriff Oldham said a fifth child, a 7-year-old Dallen Clayton, was not injured. However, it was not clear if he escaped or was allowed to leave.

Oldham said it was a blended family, and as of Saturday morning, the SCSO was still trying to get in touch with the 7 year old’s father who is different than the father of the four victims.

Oldham went on to say this case has impacted their SCSO family because one of their employees was an aunt to the children.

Friday a 911 call for the fatal stabbings came in around 12:45 p.m. at the Greens at Irene apartment complex on Southern Hill Drive in southeast Shelby County.

There will be a candlelight vigil tonight at the apartment complex.