The mother of two young girls found dead in a canal asked a stranger to baptise her daughters while holding a Bible, US police said.
Mystery surrounds why Tinessa Hogan posed the bizarre question while swimming with her daughters Destiny and Daysha Hogan, aged nine and seven.
Officers are appealing for information after the neighbour declined and Hogan did not report her children's disappearance.
Police said their causes of death have still not been determined after the family was seen together swimming in the Lauderhill canal in Florida on Monday.
The girls' bodies were recovered the next day and the 36-year-old single mum was named as a person of interest in connection with the tragedy.
She has not been arrested but was contacted by police in connection with the suspicious deaths, the New York Post reports.
Police told a Wednesday evening press conference that she was seen at the canal swimming with her daughters on Monday.
She was carrying a Bible and reportedly asked a neighbour if she could baptise her children.
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The neighbour Marie Williams told the Herald that she declined and ushered her children inside, adding: “I was more concerned for her.
“I should have been more cautious.”
The bizarre conversation happened around the same time Destiny and Daysha were last seen, police said.
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Lauderhill Police Lt. Mike Bigwood said: “She is not in the community right now, and we’re not at liberty to say where she is."
She added the girl’s father is not in the family picture and said: “We’re making a plea to the public and specifically the community of central Lauderhill, to please, if you know the family, if you know the children, if you’re familiar with the relationship, if you’re familiar with any churches, organisations that the family may be a part of, please call us.
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“We desperately need to know what these relationships are and put some context to how this may have happened.”
The girl’s bodies were recovered after police reportedly received disturbing 911 calls.
“I need you guys to come … to see if there is a little girl’s body in the water,” one caller said. “I can’t tell if it’s a mannequin head, I mean a mannequin body or a body that’s been in the water for some days.”
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The first girl was found wearing jean shorts and a grey T-shirt that read “Dance” in pink lettering, WPLG reported.
A second juvenile girl was discovered floating in the same waters at just before 9pm., the reports said.
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