A woman who drowned her seven-year-old son last February had admitted to her family that she had thoughts about killing her two young children.


Nerlin Lizbeth Sarmiento, 32, is shown with her husband Florentino Jajoy and her seven-year-old son, Omar. (Facebook)

The admission is part of an agreed statement of facts entered at a hearing into whether Nerlin Sarmiento should be held not criminally responsible for the death of her son Omar Jajoy.

The statement says Sarmiento had been diagnosed as suffering from depression and possibly bipolar disorder in the two years leading up to the boy’s drowning on Feb.12, 2013.

"At different points in the months leading up to the incident, the accused admitted in conversations to both her mother and husband that she was having thoughts of killing her children," the statement reads.

The family had been having money troubles and Sarmiento said she saw no future for her family.

In a video-taped interview with a homicide detective, she confessed she had regular thoughts of killing her children because she thought it was better to be dead than to be poor.

Sarmiento had been admitted to the Grey Nuns Hospital several times for treatment, even staying overnight on occasion in order to reduce her stress.

At one point, unknown to her husband or mother, Sarmiento took her daughter to her bedroom "where she placed her ... on the bed and began to choke her."

Once her daughter resisted, Sarmiento backed off, the statement says.

On the morning that Omar drowned, the two children were having breakfast when Sarmiento began filling the bathtub.

Omar was still working on his homework so his sister left for school on her own at her mother’s urging.

About 10 minutes later Sarmiento called 911 to report she had "killed her son," that she had "drowned him."

Paramedics found the boy's body in the bathtub which had already been drained.

In the interview with the detective, when asked how Sarmiento felt at the time, she replied, "Guilty. Sad."

with files from CBC's Janice Johnston