Police: Mother last person alive in suspected murder-suicide

This Aug. 14, 2015 photo shows the mobile home where a couple and their two young children were found dead in Grand Traverse County’s Garfield Township, Michigan, according to authorities. Police say the deaths were a homicide-suicide, although the manner of death remains undermined. (AP Photo/John Flesher)

GARFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — The mother was the last person alive in a northern Michigan house where a couple and their two young children were found dead in an apparent “homicide-suicide,” according to authorities.

Tamisha Mendenhall, 34, suffered a self-inflicted, fatal stab wound in the groin that pierced her femoral artery, Michigan State Police said in a news release Monday.

The exact cause of death is pending for her husband, Jeffrey Allan Mendenhall, 54; 6-year-old Thomas and 3-year-old Olivia, said Sgt. Scott Bates.

Troopers found their bodies Thursday in their Garfield Township home. They likely died two days earlier.

Preliminary autopsy results showed no signs of physical injury to the father and children. Empty prescription medication bottles were found in the house and a helium tank in the children’s room, police said in a release.

Medications listed on the bottles contained Benzodiazepine, which police said generally is prescribed to treat anxiety and induce sleep.

“Some of the prescription medication capsules had been opened,” police said. “White residue was discovered on a couple small medical cups.”

Officers also found empty trash bags, vinyl tubing and the helium tank’s valve in a kitchen trash container. The valve had been modified with tape to attach it to the vinyl tubing.

Jeffrey Mendenhall’s body was on a hallway floor. His head was on a pillow in the doorway where the bodies of their children were found. He also was holding flowers.

Tamisha Mendenhall’s body was found a few feet away.

Vehicles are parked outside a home where a family were found dead in a Traverse City, Mich, mobile home park on Friday, Aug. 14, 2014. Authorities identified the deceased as Jeffery Allan Mendenhall, 54, Tamisha Marie Mendenhall, 34, and their children Thomas, 6, and Olivia, 3. (AP Photo/Jan-Michael Stump/Traverse City Record-Eagle)
Vehicles are parked outside a home where a family were found dead in a Traverse City, Mich, mobile home park on Friday, Aug. 14, 2014. Authorities identified the deceased as Jeffery Allan Mendenhall, 54, Tamisha Marie Mendenhall, 34, and their children Thomas, 6, and Olivia, 3. (AP Photo/Jan-Michael Stump/Traverse City Record-Eagle)

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