Vigil held for children allegedly smothered and killed by mother in south Phoenix

A memorial for three children who were found dead in South Phoenix on Monday continues to grow, with people, including complete strangers, stopping by the scene.

The three children, identified as three-year-old Zane Henry, Mireya Henry and seven-month-old Catalaya Rios, were found dead inside a home north of the intersection of Baseline Road and 24th Street on Monday. Mireya was supposed to celebrate her second birthday next week. 

Rachel Henry (Photo Courtesy: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office)

Phoenix Police say the mother of the three children, 22-year-old Rachel Henry, has admitted to killing the three children by smothering them. Court documents released on Tuesday provided graphic details surrounding the murders, with Henry telling investigators how she smothered the three children, one by one, and then placing them in a position on the living room couch, as if they are asleep.

One of the people who took a moment at the memorial and think about the horror that took place inside the home was Isabel Villar.

"It's just unexplainable why she did this. She had no heart," said Villar, as she became increasingly emotional. "I came because it's something so hard to see, and especially me being a mom of two babies, a one-year-old and a two-year-old, I just thought about it all day. I just can't imagine why she did this to her own babies."

Isabel Villar, at the memorial set up for three children who were found dead inside a mobile home in South Phoenix

Pictures of children were left at the memorial Wednesday morning, which were confirmed by Henry's friend in Oklahoma as those of the children.

Arizona's department of child safety said they have had no contact with Henry, but the family only moved to Phoenix from Oklahoma in summer 2019. Child welfare officials in Oklahoma have said that they will not release records involving the family.

The children's father, along with another relative, were also in the home at the time. They have not been charged, but Phoenix Police officials say the investigation continues.

At Henry's initial court appearance, prosecutors claim her children were, at one point, taken from her home in Oklahoma because of her drug addiction.

According to court documents, a person acknowledged that Henry had a methamphetamine addiction, and had been acting strange over the past several days. The person's name was redacted in court documents.

Photos of the three children killed in a Phoenix home.

Henry's bond was set at $3 million. She remains in jail, and has denied FOX 10's request for an interview.

A vigil is set to take place at 7:00 p.m. Wednesday, January 22.