A mother returned to her luxurious Manhattan apartment on Thursday night to find her two-year-old son and six-year-old daughter had been stabbed to death in the bathtub by their nanny, who then slit her own throat in a failed suicide attempt.
Marina Krim arrived at the family’s apartment on the Upper West Side at around 5.30pm with her other daughter, three-year-old Nessie, to find son Leo and daughter Lulu lying in a pool of blood each with multiple stab wounds.
The nanny, 50-year-old Yoselyn Ortega, survived her suicide attempt and is in police custody.
‘There were bloodcurdling screams from a woman,’ neighbour Rima Starr said. ‘There was some kind of screaming about, “You slit her throat!” ‘It was horrible.’
Mrs Krim, who neighbours say may have worked as a pediatrician and whose husband is the senior vice president and general manager of CNBC Digital, returned home after Ortega failed to meet her and Nessie for swimming lessons with the other children.
She entered the three-bedroom, $10,000-a-month apartment at West 75th Street but found it dark, Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said.
She returned to the lobby to ask the doorman if he had seen the children and, when he said they had not left, she returned to the home and looked through each room.
She finally switched on the bathroom lights and discovered the horrifying scene.
There she found Ortega on the floor with a slit throat and with her wrists cut and bleeding, the New York Post reported. Police said a kitchen knife was nearby.
Mrs Krim also found her two children in the bathtub with stab wounds covering their bodies, and then tried to stop the nanny’s neck from bleeding with a towel, according to the Post.
Lucianne Minihan, whose husband is the building’s superintendent, told DNAInfo: ‘She was screaming at the top of her lungs. She was screaming, “Help me! Help me!”‘
Neighbours dialed 911 and, although Lulu and Leo reportedly appeared to be breathing when medics arrived, they were pronounced dead on arrival at hospital.
Ortega was unresponsive but was taken to New York-Cornell Hospital in a critical but stable condition. She was in a stable condition on Friday morning and police sources say she may have also taken pills.
Mrs Krim and Nessie, who had not witnessed the grisly scene, were also taken to hospital for treatment, and Mrs Krim was sedated.
A neighbour told the Wall Street Journal the woman had left the building ‘inconsolable, hysterical, frantic’.
Her husband, Kevin Krim, had been on a business trip and was met by police at the airport when he returned to New York. Officers recounted the horror to him and he was escorted to the hospital.
Mr and Mrs Krim remained at St. Luke’s hospital last night with Mrs Krim’s sister. Police said the shocked mother was unable to communicate.
The family had moved to New York from San Francisco within the last few years, and Mr Krim was named general manager of CNBC’s digital media division in March.
He is a Harvard graduate and has recently worked at Bloomberg and Yahoo!, according to his LinkedIn profile.
The children’s grandmother on their father’s side, Karen Krim, told the Post that the family hired Ortega a year ago, until which time Mrs Krim had been a stay-at-home mother.
When Leo was born, they searched for a nanny. They even spent nine days with her family in the Dominican Republic, as documented on Mrs Krim’s online journal.
Ortega has no criminal record.
‘Kevin told me that she was a nice girl,’ the grandmother told The Post. ‘How could she do something like that? The children were angels.’
Ortega’s niece, Katherine Garcia, added that her aunt had been ‘acting kind of nervous lately’ but insisted that she had loved the children.
Police said there were no immediate explanations for the murders and suicide attempt. Paul J. Browne, from the police department, told the New York Times he did not know a note had been left.
Mrs Krim, who teaches weekly art lessons to children, kept an online journal entitled ‘Life with the Krim Kids’, which she had last updated just three hours before the murders.
She had written: ‘Leo speaks in the most adorable way possible.’
The online journal paints a tender picture of her life with her husband and their beloved children, and gives an insight into the horrendous loss that has befallen the family.
She documents trips to pick apples, visits to pumpkin patches and playdates. Photographs show the children playing happily together around the home and on their first days of school.
‘One of the best parts of my day is after I drop both girls off at school and have 3 precious hours with little Lito all to myself,’ she wrote. ‘Ok, I’m near getting cheesy I adore this boy so much!!!’
She added how he loved to play with toy cars and trucks, and would set up his own ‘kitchen’ in the living room where he would pretend to make bacon.
‘Lito, I must say, is a very clever little boy,’ she wrote. ‘He is super talkative and just has a million thoughts running through his brain and can express himself amazingly well for an almost-2 year old. I’m thinking he could be a Mini-Kevin.’
The family lives in one of the city’s most idyllic neighborhoods, just a block from Central Park and a few more from the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts.
It is home to many affluent families, and seeing children accompanied by nannies is an everyday part of life there, making the idea of such violence even more disturbing to residents.