Police not seeking suspects in deaths of woman, 2 kidsby Tim Nelson, Minnesota Public Radio
ST. PAUL, Minn. — Police have identified the three people found dead in a home in Zimmerman over the weekend as a mother and her two children.
The Sherburne County Sheriff says officers found Stephanie Shields, 35, dead along with her son, Nolan, 7, and daughter, Josephine, 6. Sheriff Joel Brott says a family member called police after discovering the bodies Sunday morning.
Investigators have not disclosed the causes of their deaths or who found them. The sheriff's office will only say that investigators are not seeking any suspects at this time, and that the bodies have been taken to the Ramsey County Medical Examiner's office for autopsies.
Shields' husband, Sgt. 1st Class Mark F. Shields is a member of the Minnesota National Guard, spokeswoman Army Maj. Kristen L. Auge said. Shields has been a Guard member since December 1989. He currently is a noncommissioned officer for the 850th Horizontal Engineer Company, Minnesota National Guard. He also served in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom from September 2004 to November 2005.
Online court records show that neither Shields nor her husband have criminal records. Brott told the St. Cloud Times on Monday that Shields' husband moved out of the residence within the last week, but that a review of calls for service in the last five years shows that his office has never been called to the house.
Zimmerman is a city of about 5,000 people and is about 40 miles northwest of Minneapolis.
A spokesman for the Elk River Area School District said that school officials are planning a crisis meeting today, in response to the deaths.
In the statement, Zimmerman Elementary School Principal Susan Johnston said "Josephine Shields and her brother Nolan were part of our Zimmerman Elementary School family and we are deeply saddened."
MPR News reporter Julie Siple contributed to this story. Also written with information from the Associated Press.