A Colorado teenager allegedly told police he stabbed his younger siblings to death Tuesday because he wanted to live alone in his family's Colorado Springs house.
Malik Vincent Murphy, 19, has been charged with two counts of first-degree murder in the deaths of his 5-year-old sister, Sophia, and 7-year-old brother, Noah. He was also charged with one count of attempted first-degree murder after stabbing his father, 42-year-old Jefferson Murphy.
The children were taken to a local hospital, where they later died. Jefferson is expected to survive his injuries.
"It was very difficult on our staff when they arrived they were doing life-saving measures to hold onto those kiddos," Colorado Springs police Lt. Howard Black told PEOPLE. "It is impacting the whole state of Colorado to have such young loss of life. It is so heartbreaking."
Black told the Denver Post that police were called to the family's home at 1:11 a.m. Tuesday morning. According to his arrest warrant affidavit, Murphy shared a room in their basement with his younger siblings. He allegedly told police he stabbed Sophia three times, and stabbed his brother three times.
Jefferson told police he heard the screams and rushed to the basement. His son then stabbed him in the neck. Though he managed to push his son to the ground, Jefferson held him in the garage until police arrived.
He also went on to tell police his son talked about killing family members before.
Murphy told police that he wanted to kill his family to have their home to himself. He also said he bought the knife he used at a Walmart months ago.
"Malik Murphy stated his plan was to kill his entire family and then bury them in the backyard, and this would allow him to be alone in his residence," the affidavit reads.
Members of Murphy's family say they believe he suffered from mental illness.
"I think he had mental problems," Bobbie McCottrell, his great aunt, told the Post. "That's a tragedy. I've just been praying. Lord have mercy."
Murphy is due in court on Oct. 27. He's being held at El Paso County Jail without bond and has not entered a plea yet.
Photo credit: Twitter / @earhustle