Brooklyn mother suspected of drowning her 3 children faced deportation

Brooklyn mum suspected of drown her three young children Monday was facing eviction from her apartment, struggling with custody issues and dealing with mental health issues before she allegedly killed the children, The Post has learned.

Erin Merdy, 30, of Coney Island owed more than $10,000 in back rent for her Neptune Avenue apartment, where she lived with her children and had been threatened with eviction since January, after the expiration of the state’s COVID-19 eviction moratorium, court records View.

The mother, who allegedly told relatives she drowned her children – Oliver, 3 months, Liliana, 4, and Zachary, 7 – on a nearby beach early on Monday, had stopped paying her $1,531 rent per month. in July 2021 and received an eviction notice days before the moratorium expired in January, records show.

Relatives contacted by The Post on Monday said Merdy had seemed unstable in recent years and had struggled to maintain consistent relationships.

“There was a time when Erin and I were in touch all the time, but in 2015, 2016, she disappeared from Earth. I didn’t know how to get in touch with her,” Merdy’s uncle, Levy Stephen, told The Post.

“Now I feel sorry for that. She obviously needed help, and you can’t help but think, “Maybe I could have…”

Erin Merdy,
Erin Merdy was struggling with her sanity and facing a custody battle.
Paul Martinca
Erin Merdy,
The mother-of-three has been supported in rent since last year.
Paul Martinca

“I am at a loss for words. It’s not every day that you lose three family members in one day,” he said. “Nobody wants to go to the funeral and see those three bodies.”

Another uncle, Jean Stephen, 64, said Merdy didn’t seem to ‘have his life together.

“I don’t think she can handle a relationship or anything like that. She didn’t seem like that kind of person. She didn’t seem stable,” the parent said.

“Anyone can go out and have fun, but a stable person can settle down with just one person. She didn’t have enough life to do that.

Around 1 a.m. on Monday, concerned relatives called the police to report that Merdy may have been drunk and that she may have done something to harm her children. Hours later, the mother was found by police walking barefoot in the sand of Coney Island beach, wearing a bathrobe and looking dazed.

Police transport one of 3 missing children
The police discover one of the three children who were allegedly abused by their mother.
Robert Mecea
An EMS supervisor renders medical attention to one of the children.
An EMS supervisor renders medical attention to one of the children.
Robert Mecea
A person on the scene
Merdy’s family members admit they knew about his endless struggles.
Robert Mecea
Oliver, 3 months, Liliana, 4 and Zachary, 7
Merdy allegedly drowned his three children – Oliver, Liliana and Zachary (pictured).

Law enforcement sources said that before cops found her, she told relatives she had “drowned the three children”. The children were later found unconscious along the shoreline, just three blocks from their home on Neptune Avenue, and pronounced dead at Coney Island Hospital shortly thereafter.

Merdy’s aunt, Dine Stephen, said she knew her niece was struggling, but didn’t know how badly.

“I knew she was struggling in the sense that she was trying to find her way in life. In this family, we have a history of mental illness to varying degrees. A few of us struggled with bipolar disorder, but I didn’t know about her mental issues,” the aunt said.

“I just knew she was trying to find a way for her kids, a way to pick herself up. … It was the mental issues that took over.

Another uncle, Eddy Stephen, said he was ‘speechless’ when he heard relatives say ‘Erin killed her three children.

“She did some crazy stuff, but nothing that could hurt her kids or herself,” Eddy said.

“Before, she liked to party here and there, drink a little, but I didn’t see any drug abuse or see that she was really irresponsible. It’s just tragic. I do not know. She never gave us the sign that she would harm her children. She loved her children.

Erin Merdy
Relatives told police that Merdy may have harmed his children.
Paul Martinca

Merdy’s uncle Levy said his niece was in the middle of a custody dispute with the father of 7-year-old Zachary before Monday’s horror.

“He had issues with the way she was raising the child, from what I understand,” Levy said.

“She kind of left the grid after that, changed her numbers. She wasn’t on social media — at least not to the extent that I could find her.

Crime scene
The police investigate the scene of the tragic crime.
Robert Mecea

Law enforcement sources noted that Merdy did not bring his son to a custody swap in July before a scheduled six-week visit with the child’s father.

In May, Merdy removed Zachary from his junior football team without explanation, according to his coach.

“She never made it clear why he stopped playing,” CITY Silverbacks head coach Allen McFarland told The Post. “She seemed to juggle a lot.”

During the 2021 football season, coaches from the Youth Sports Mentoring Program routinely picked up Zachary for training, fed him after games and brought him home, said McFarland, 34. .

They tried to convince Merdy to bring Zachary, who McFarland said loved football, back to the team, to no avail.

“We thought it would be a positive thing for him, to get him out of the house and get involved,” the head coach said. “We train four times a week for three hours a day. It would have been a nice relief for the household.

The exact cause of death of the children has not yet been determined.

McFarland held back tears as he imagined the terror Zachary must have endured at the end of his life.

“The person you should trust the most in the world is your mother,” he said. “A 7-year-old would have loved going to the beach. I can only imagine what that kid was thinking at the time.

The coach broke the tragic news to the boy’s former teammates in training on Monday night. The young soccer players released balloons with Zachary’s number 15 jersey into the Coney Island sky and shouted “Zachary, we love you” as a final goodbye.

No charges were filed against Merdy, who was rushed to NYU Langone Hospital late Monday morning for a psychiatric evaluation.

“How does she come back from this?” Even if you come to your senses, how will you get over the fact that you killed your children? said Levy.

“It’s a shadow that’s going to be over her for the rest of her life. That’s what worries me. I don’t think there’s a support group out there for people who commit such a heinous crime. Y is there any functional people who have done this?”

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