Don Bauder 2:30 p.m., Sept. 1
Mother of drowned children arrested, four months later
1-and-2-year-old son and daughter found in pool outside La Mesa house used as marijuana farm
After over four months of investigation, Tassie Behrens was arrested yesterday (September 19) on a host of charges related to a tragedy on May 13 that left her infant children, Harley and Jason Bradford, dead.
On the morning of May 13, Behrens awoke and could not find either of her children. She found them a short time later, unconscious in the pool of a residence on the 10000 block of Sunset Avenue in La Mesa.
Pulling one-year-old Harley and two-year-old Jason from the pool, she and a friend drove to a fire station seeking help. The children received medical treatment there and at a local hospital, but were ultimately pronounced dead.
The story Behrens told Sheriff’s investigators proved misleading – she first told detectives that she had found the children in the pool of a mobile home park before admitting they had actually drowned at the Sunset residence. When deputies arrived to inspect the scene, they discovered a marijuana grow operation in the basement.
At that time, the home’s primary occupant, Larry Dangelo, was arrested on a host of charges, ranging from felony child abuse to manufacture of a controlled substance to interfering with power lines.
The Sheriff’s Homicide Detail and Narcotics Task Force recently completed a lengthy investigation, and at its conclusion Behrens was also taken into custody on a warrant for many of the same charges.
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