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Pa. mom charged with murder in deaths of children found hanged

Pamela Lehman, Laurie Mason Schroeder and Manuel Gamiz Jr., The Morning Call (Allentown, Pa.) on

Published in News & Features

ALLENTOWN, Pa. -- In the weeks before her two children were found hanging in the basement of her Berks County home, Lisa Snyder told a friend that she was depressed and "didn't care about her kids," an investigation showed.

Snyder, 36, searched the internet for information about death by hanging and carbon monoxide poisoning, and perused true-crime television shows about getting away with murder. One day before the hanging, Snyder ordered the dog lead, a type of dog leash, that was found wrapped around their necks.

She picked it up the next morning from the Hamburg Walmart, police said, hours before the children were found.

After more than two months of investigation, authorities Monday charged Snyder with first-degree murder, third-degree murder, tampering with evidence, endangering the welfare of children, animal cruelty and sexual intercourse with a dog.

As Snyder, of Albany Township, was arrested Monday, she showed "little to no emotion," said Berks County District Attorney John Adams, and continued to insist that her son, Conner, was bullied at school and took his own life and that of his sister, Brinley.

Adams said interviews with Conner's classmates and teachers, as well as a video of him getting off the bus shortly before Snyder called 911 to report finding the children hanging, showed that wasn't true.


"The video shows no sign that Conner was in distress whatsoever," Adams said. "In fact, from the video he appeared to be a happy child."

Adams confirmed that Berks County Children and Youth had previously removed Conner and Brinley from Snyder's care, later returning the children to their mother.

The dog-related charges stem from sexually explicit photos of Snyder with the family dog that were uncovered during the investigation and are not related to the homicide charges, Adams said.

Snyder is being held in Berks County Jail without bail.


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