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Detectives knew almost immediately the husband of a mother and three children found dead inside their home in Melbourne’s north-west last month was not to blame for the horrific tragedy.
WARNING: This story contains content that some readers might find distressing.
Police arrived at the Tullamarine home about 12.20pm on January 14 to find the dead bodies of 42-year-old Katie Perinovic and her three children Claire, aged seven, Anna, five, and Matthew, three.
Thomas Perinovic found the bodies of his wife and children inside their Tullamarine home. (Supplied Nine)
The father of the children and Ms Perinovic’s husband, Tomislav Perinovic, 48, raised the alarm and called Triple Zero.
The Coroner’s Court of Victoria today heard harrowing new details of the tragedy, including that Mr Perinovic went to buy groceries for his family and when he returned, he found his three-year-old son Matthew dead in the kitchen.
When paramedics arrived, the distressed father walked into a nearby room, only to find his wife, five-year-old daughter Anna and seven-year-old daughter Clare, had also been killed.
A large knife was found near where bodies were discovered.
Counsel assisting the coroner, Nicholas Ngai, told the court all four had upper body injuries, consistent with knife wounds.
Detectives became quickly aware Katie Perinovic had killed her three children. (Supplied Nine)
Police arrested Mr Perinovic, but he denied any involvement and detectives soon realised he was telling the truth.
“It quickly became evident that, from a homicide perspective, the responsibility for all four deaths lay solely with the mother,” Detective Acting Sergeant Luke Farrell said.
Investigators revealed today there was no history of family violence in the home, or involvement of child protection authorities.
But Ms Perinovic was receiving help for mental health issues in the month leading up to the tragedy.
Her doctors have been asked to provide a report about the treatment she was receiving.
Homicide Squad detectives swarmed the suburban home at the time of the tragedy. (Nine)
Flower tributes, notes and drawings were placed outside the Tullamarine home. (9News)
The court was told Mr Perinovic was unable to attend today’s hearing because of his significant grief.
Friends and relatives of the family will also give statements to help the coroner piece together how the murder-suicide unfolded.
A date for the inquest will be set later this year.
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