Motive a mystery in killing of three kids: 'I just don’t understand how he made this choice'

A father suspected of killing his three children in West Sacramento has been interviewed by investigators, though they still aren’t offering a motive for the slayings, authorities said Friday.

Investigators talked with Robert William Hodges, 32, after he was found near midnight Thursday parked about seven miles from the apartment where police found the three children after a domestic violence call. Police previously said Hodges was 33.

“I don’t know what they gleaned from that interview. I don’t know what the motive was,” said West Sacramento Police Sgt. Roger Kinney.

Hodges is being held for arraignment Monday on suspicion of three counts of murder in the slayings of 11-year-old Kelvin Hodges, 9-year-old Julie Hodges and Lucas Hodges, nearly 8 months.

A message left at a telephone number linked to Hodges’ parents was not returned. Authorities said he does not yet appear to have a lawyer.

Yolo County Chief Deputy Coroner Gina Moya said more tests are needed before authorities can say how the children died.

Hodges also is being held on suspicion of attempted murder in an assault on his wife, Mai Hodges.

“She didn’t go to a hospital, but what he did to her was significant enough that it did merit a charge of attempted murder from our investigators,” Kinney said.

Mai Hodges’ sister, Lyang Xvang, said the family was not aware of any problems between the couple.

“They love each other very much,” Xvang said. “I just don’t understand how he made this choice.”

Mai Hodges is talking with investigators as she is able, Kinney said.

“I’m sure she’s going through a roller coaster of emotions, so we’re getting what we can out of her as she’s able to communicate,” he said.

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