The man charged with murdering his wife and two young daughters in Queens last weekend is being held without bail tonight, awaiting action by a grand jury. NY1's Vivian Lee was at his arraignment, where prosecutors say he offered a shocking rationale for killing the children.
At his arraignment Friday, 29-year-old Miguel Mejia Ramos did not enter a plea to murder and weapons charges connected to last weekend's stabbing deaths of his wife Deisy Garcia and their daughters 2-year-old Danielle and 1-year-old Jocelyn.
Deisy Garcia's family came to the arraignment and left it in tears.
A woman who said she was Deisy's aunt began describing a phone call she got from Deisy's mother the night of the stabbings, but could not finish.
Her Aunt told NY1 she received a call from a frightened Garcia before the incident.
"My sister called us and told us that something was happening there. I ran over quickly since I live nearby. And, when I arrived, the police had arrived too and I could see the body overturned by the door and the girls were there too,” said Evelinda Alvarado through a translator.
Mejia-Ramos is a Mexican citizen. Authorities arrested him in Texas, where they say he was headed for the border with Mexico.
During his arraignment, prosecutors said Mejia Ramos first told police in Texas that he found his children dead and blamed his wife, who he was separating from.
But investigators say after they pressed him, he admitted stabbing the children and his wife after finding cellphone and Facebook photos of her with another man.
Prosecutors say Mejia Ramos even said he kissed and hugged the children before killing them.
Queens District attorney Richard Brown says on his flight to New York with detectives, Mejia Ramos made another startling admission.
"When asked why it is that he killed the children, he alleged to have said because he didn’t have car seats to take them with him. So as I say, I mean, it's just a terribly tragic and sad and a disturbing case,” said Queens District Attorney Richard Brown.
Prosecutors say he claimed he tried to kill himself, and his lawyer asked the judge to put Mejia Ramos under suicide watch.
Deisy Garcia's uncle Romeo Chuk said he did not believe Mejia Ramos felt that much remorse.
This case is expected to go to a grand jury next week. If convicted, Mejia-Ramos faces life without parole.
Brown says he will not allow any plea bargaining.