Jason Karels Wiki – Bio
Jason Karels is an Illinois father, who allegedly drowned his three children before trying to take his own life and leading authorities on a police chase, cops said.
Karels was charged in the deaths of his kids, Bryant, 5, Cassidy, 3, and Gideon, 2, at his suburban Chicago home on East Camden Lane in Round Lake Beach, the Chicago Tribune reported.
He is 35 years old.
Father Allegedly Drowned His Three Children
“Mr. Karels left a note in the home, which stated, ‘If I can’t have them, neither can you,’” Lake County State’s Attorney Eric Rinehart said during a Wednesday court hearing for Jason Karels.
He has been charged with murder for the Monday deaths of his three young children—5-year-old Bryant, 3-year-old Cassie, and 2-year-old Gideon. On Wednesday, a Lake County judge set the father’s bail at $10 million.
His estranged wife, Debra Karels, was supposed to pick up the children after spending the weekend with their dad. Still, she could not reach him, so she asked police to conduct a wellness check at the residence at about 1:40 p.m. Monday, ABC 7 Chicago reported.
When officers arrived, they discovered the young victims in the bedroom.
Officials said that preliminary autopsies found that the children died from drowning.
Jason had left the deadly scene in his red Nissan Maxima, which state troopers later noticed on Interstate 57. They chased until the car crashed off Interstate 80 in Joliet, where the father was arrested.
“After the crash, Karels made statements to police officers involved in the chase and wearing body-worn cameras indicating he was responsible for the deaths of the children at the Round Lake Beach home,” Round Lake Beach Police Chief Gilbert Rivera said, according to ABC 7.
“He also said he attempted to commit suicide several times after the deaths of the children but was unsuccessful during these attempts,” he said.
Officials said the couple was estranged and may have been sharing custody of their children. The motive for the crime remains under investigation.
“I don’t know that anything could’ve stopped this or if there were any early indications of it. As I mentioned, we were not familiar with this family nor with the house,” the police chief added.
After being hospitalized briefly, Jason was transported to the Lake County Jail, where he was held on three counts of first-degree murder.
Rivera told CBS Chicago that investigators were not immediately aware of any cases of abuse involving the children and if Jason had a history of mental illness or a criminal background.