ELKHART, Ind. — A northern Indiana woman accused of abducting her two young children told police she smothered them with her hands after taking them to a park and a restaurant, a court document filed Wednesday said.
A probable cause affidavit states Amber Pasztor, 29, of Fort Wayne, flagged down an Elkhart police officer about 5:30 p.m. Monday and told him her children were dead in the back seat of the car she was driving.
When another officer asked Pasztor what had happened, “Amber replied that she had ‘smothered them,'” the affidavit said.
Pasztor is being held without bond on two preliminary counts of murder in the deaths of 7-year-old Liliana Hernandez and 6-year-old Rene Pasztor. She didn’t have legal custody of the children, who were living with her parents in Fort Wayne. Their abduction led authorities to issue an Amber Alert for them earlier Monday.
Elkhart County Prosecutor Curtis Hill Jr. told a news conference Tuesday that he expected to file murder charges against Pasztor this week. An autopsy Tuesday found the children were asphyxiated.
After her arrest, Pasztor told a detective that she kicked in the door of her father’s home and took the children several places, “including a restaurant and park, and at some point covered both of their faces and nose with her hands until they both died,” the affidavit said.
Pasztor was driving a car belonging to a neighbor, 65-year-old Frank Macomber, who was found shot to death and likely died before the children were abducted, Allen County Prosecutor Karen Richards said Tuesday. No charges have been filed in connection with his death, which, like the children’s, has been ruled a homicide. All three deaths remain under investigation.
Online court records did not list an attorney for Pasztor, who is being held in the Elkhart County Jail.
The (Fort Wayne) Journal Gazette reported that, separately, a probable cause affidavit was filed Monday in Allen County alleging Pasztor violated protective orders Sept. 14 issued on behalf of her surviving son, Juelz Santos Aguirre, 3, and her stepmother, Emily Green.
Her father, Ricky Green, told authorities that Pasztor had threatened through calls and text messages to take the children away, although her parental rights had been terminated. As a result, a warrant was issued for Pasztor on an invasion of privacy charge.
In filing for the protective orders, which were granted in March 2015, Emily Green alleged that Pasztor had harassed and threatened to harm her and break into her house. In the summer of 2014, Green said, Pasztor repeatedly left Juelz alone all night and “would blast the stereo so neighbors couldn’t hear him cry.”
WANE-TV reported the Whitley County Sheriff’s Office confirmed the children’s father, Rene Hernandez, died in 2010. Investigators in the county west of Fort Wayne found Hernandez’s body in a wooded area, cut in two. The crime was never solved.