Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez announced that a Coney Island woman has been indicted on first-degree murder charges. She is accused of drowning her three children near their home in Coney Island.
“These innocent young children had their entire lives ahead of them when their own mother allegedly drowned and left them on a Coney Island beach,” Gonzalez said.
“This is a shocking and unspeakable crime, and with this prosecution, we will seek justice.”
The defendant is Erin Merdy, 30, of Coney Island, Brooklyn. She was arraigned Oct. 11, before Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Danny Chun.
Merdy is being charged with three counts of first-degree murder and nine counts of second-degree murder. She is facing a maximum sentence of life without the possibility of parole if convicted of the top count. Merdy is being held without bail and was ordered to return to court on November 30, 2022.
Gonzalez said according to the investigation, on September 12, 2022, at approximately 12:37am, the defendant allegedly took her three kids – Zachary Merdy, 7, Liliana Stephens Merdy, 4, and Oliver Bondarev, 3 months – to the beach near West 35th Street and drowned them in the ocean.
At approximately 1:25am, she started walking from the beach, alone, towards the apartment of the father of the youngest child, located in Brighton Beach, more than two miles away. She then called family members. When she would not answer questions regarding the whereabouts of her children, relatives and the father called 911 and went to look for her.
The police then initiated a search. At about 4:30am, police located the children, who were unresponsive and wet, on the shoreline near West 35th Street. The children were pronounced dead at Coney Island Hospital.
The defendant’s family members found her in Brighton Beach wet and barefoot. She repeatedly said that the children were gone and that she was sorry, according to the investigation.