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Slain Kids Told DCF They Feared Mom

In the months before a Volusia County man shot his three children, his wife's drinking seemed to be tearing the family apart.

According to documents released Tuesday by state child welfare officials, Cynthia Mohney was stumbling drunk at times, repeatedly slapped the children and they were increasingly afraid of her.

It was her disturbing behavior that brought child protective investigators to the home in June and recommended she seek substance abuse treatment. Two of the children even told investigators they felt safer with their father.

The couple was in the midst of a bitter divorce when authorities say David Mohney reached for a gun during an argument with his wife last Friday and shot their children before killing himself. The youngest child, a 9-year-old girl, survived. But both of her siblings died.