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Father Finds Two Children Dead in Bathtub

October 18, 2003

LAMAR, Colo. (AP) _ Authorities say a man returning home found his infant son and stepdaughter dead in a bathtub and his wife with her wrists slashed in an apparent suicide attempt.

Prowers County Coroner Joe Giadone identified the children as Grace Headlee, 4, and Gabriel Amaya, 5 months. Their mother, Rebekah Amaya, 32, was listed in good condition Friday at a hospital where she was under police watch.

Leo Amaya, Gabriel’s father, found the children dead Thursday. He told police his wife had been suffering stress problems.

``Words cannot express the shock and grief we feel at this time,″ Leo Amaya said. ``We take comfort in knowing that Grace and Gabriel are together right now, in the loving arms of Christ.″

Mark Headlee, a Lamar police officer who is Grace’s father and Rebekah Amaya’s ex-husband, returned to Lamar from Utah where he had been on military duty. His family declined to comment Friday.

Lamar Police Department Captain Rick Copess declined at a news conference to name Rebekah Amaya as chief suspect in the investigation, saying police want to ``keep an open mind about all possibilities.″

The deaths shocked the town of 8,700 near the Kansas border, about 170 miles southeast of Denver. They were the town’s first homicides there in more than a decade.

``This is a pretty close-knit community, and with something like this, we will pull together,″ Misty Clark, who did business with Leo Amaya’s company, Amaya’s Monograms Plus.

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