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Mother Shoots Son, Husband and Herself Over Child’s Birth Defect

August 12, 1996

ROCHESTER, Minn. (AP) _ A woman whose 4-month-old son was born with a birth defect shot him, her husband and herself, leaving a note saying she did not want the boy ``to grow up that way,″ police said today. The baby survived but the parents died.

While six of the family’s nine children slept upstairs Sunday morning, Sue Her killed her husband, Lee Moua, 40, as he slept on the living room floor, police Capt. Roger Peterson said today.

She wounded their 4-month-old son, John Moua, in the head, then killed herself with the .32-caliber pistol, police said.

The baby was listed in serious condition today.

Her’s family said she had kidney problems and had been depressed about John’s medical problem. He has hydrocephalus, a condition in which fluid accumulates inside the skull, enlarging the head and sometimes causing brain damage. There was no immediate word on whether John had actually suffered brain damage.

``She was so surprised to see the baby like that,″ said May Her Vue, Her’s sister. ``When the doctor tells you the baby inside is not like the others, it’s really stressful.″

Peterson said the suicide note indicated Her was concerned about her own physical and mental health, as well as her son’s condition.

``She indicated she did not want her son to grow up that way,″ he said.

Neighbor Leona Hansen said the couple’s 5-year-old daughter, Alise, had recently told her about the infant’s condition. ``She said: `Baby John cries and sleeps, cries and sleeps.‴

Police said that they had never been called to the residence before.

``They were good parents,″ said Leona Hansen, who has lived next door for six or seven years. ``I never saw them hurt each other ... They were very devoted to the children. She made clothes for the kids. And they never spoke to them in a harsh way.″

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