(CNN)In the days after the Hart family’s SUV was discovered at the bottom of a California cliff, investigators visited their Washington state home and were surprised to find almost no evidence that six children, ranging in age from 12 to 19, lived in the house.
“Upon entering the house, it was found to be extremely clean and organized,” one detective wrote, “giving a perception of being very sterile.”
“There was very little to show the children had access to any toys or items of entertainment, save for some board games found in the downstairs family room.”
The Hart family first made headlines when their upside down SUV was discovered at the bottom of a 100-foot cliff in Mendocino County, California, on March 26.
Investigators later determined that Jennifer Hart was legally intoxicated when she drove her wife and several of their six adopted children off the side of the cliff.
The bodies of Jennifer, her wife Sarah, and three of the children were recovered soon after the crash.
The body of Sierra, 12, was discovered in the surf a couple weeks later. Two of the children, 16-year-old Hannah and 15-year-old Devonte — once the focus of media attention after a photo of him hugging a white police officer in Portland, Oregon, went viral — have not been found.
Authorities soon learned the adopted children had repeatedly accused their parents of abuse, according to reports from neighbors and a social worker.
The kids specifically said their parents would withhold food from them as punishment, prompting repeated visits to neighbors to beg for food. The neighbors eventually decided the issue warranted a call to Child Protective Services.
When authorities showed up on the doorstep of the Hart family home in Woodland, they found a social worker’s business card wedged in the front door, along with a paper from Clark County Animal Control that said some of their pets had been taken for safekeeping, according to the sheriff’s office report, which details investigators’ initial efforts to uncover information about the family in the days after their car was discovered in California.
Investigators also found a refrigerator recently stocked with groceries, and fresh fruit in bowls adorning countertops.
It appeared the family had made a hasty departure, leaving behind their toothbrushes in a cup in the bathroom, and their suitcases still stacked in the garage.
“It seemed that if the family was planning a trip,” the detective said, “they would have packed some bags with clothing and other personal belongings.”
One detective said it was difficult to distinguish which bedrooms belonged to the children. Only the parents’ room could be identified based on their clothing and the decor. But none of the others rooms “were personalized for the children or showed the supporting elements that children lived in the residence,” according to the report.
The family was apparently in the process of renovating the home, and had stored some remodeling supplies in one of the bedrooms.
Some picture frames hung on the wall, but they didn’t contain family photos — simply pieces of paper specifying the frames’ measurement that were included when the frames were purchased. Otherwise, nothing seemed out of the ordinary.
Investigators have been working under the belief that Jennifer Hart intentionally drove the car over the side of the cliff.
“I’m to the point where I no longer am calling this an accident,” Mendocino County Sheriff Tom Allman told HLN earlier this year. “I’m calling it a crime.”
But Clark County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Sgt. Brent Waddell told CNN affiliate KOIN earlier this week that the motive may never be known.
“It’s very frustrating,” Waddell said. “It’s human nature — we want to put a reason to things happening.”
Co-worker was told kids would eat from garbage can
The report also details interviews with Sarah Hart’s co-workers, who told investigators that Sarah spoke openly about the financial and emotional pressures of having a large family. Sarah also told them the children had “food issues and would eat out of the garbage after being provided dinner,” according to the incident report.
One told authorities she received a text from Sarah around 3 a.m. on Saturday, March 24, informing her coworker she was sick and wouldn’t be able to open the Kohl’s department store where they worked later that morning.
Sarah didn’t show up to work on Sunday, and didn’t respond to text messages and phone calls from her co-workers. One her co-workers, Cheryl Hart — no relation — became concerned. The behavior was “odd and out of character for Sarah,” Cheryl Hart said.
When Sarah didn’t get in touch on Monday, Cheryl Hart called 911 and requested a welfare check.
None of Sarah’s co-workers heard from her again.
Sheriff: No longer calling crash an accident
Some of them were aware that Sarah was the primary source of finances for the family of eight. She told one coworker the kids were “mentally delayed” and would have to live with their adopted parents for the rest of their lives.
Sarah also said the kids “caused emotional stress on Jennifer,” and that her wife “would often call about the kids making her crazy and arguing with them,” the report notes.
According to Cheryl Hart, Sarah said the family had faced threats and harassment because she and Jennifer were lesbians and their adopted children, who were black, were a different race. CORRECTION: This article has been updated to correct the city where the viral photo of Devonte Hart was taken. It was in Portland, Oregon.
MemberHub is a Complete online system for managing your entire membership site. It produces the most beautiful, highly profitable membership sites in a matter of minutes. These memberships will keep the members engaged and hungry for more of your products
Thank you for taking the time to read our article.
If you enjoyed our content, we'd really appreciate some "love" with a share or two.
With GraphySuite now you can create professional Graphics and Videos without any technical knowledge by just using Power Point. GraphySuite has premium Done For You templates of Videos and Graphics of all types/Sizes for Social Media Platforms, Google Ads,
Watch you subscribers get there ass kicked into success with our personal coaching package.
We'll be helping live on 6 weekly calls over 6 weeks helping and developing
your customer campaigns to banking the $$ just like we did and our early users
Content NitrousBeckend monetization system for increasing longterm profits of any website. Includes detailed training and Wordpress plugin to automate the process.
Snapify OTO-1 PremiumUsing Snapify you can turn your Social Network content and #UGC into shoppable galleries for your online store, emails, blog and ad campaigns plus manage and secure the rights to digital content.
Snapify is built from the ground up to be a simpler yet smart
EsyVid CommercialTransform Old Sites and Content Into Stunning Videos With The Push Of a Button!
Stock Media Monster V1 Lucas SpecialAre You Ready To Equip Yourself With THE MOST COMPLETE STOCK MEDIA ASSET LIBRARY EVER! Get Instant Access To Over 5,000 (70 + Gig) High Definition 2015 Styled Stock Videos, Video Motion Backgrounds, Stock Photos, Web Images, Marketing Graphics, Background
VoiceRank360 Pro - [OTO1 - Quarterly]Generate Local Articles with Voice Search Keywords
Generate Unlimited Content From Questions
Post articles to Wordpress or Save to Text or html file
FAQ Creator WP Plugin
Premium Voice SEO Optimization Video Training ( x10 -15 videos)
TopStorySites StarterA Cloud Based App That Builds INSTANT 1-Click AUTHORITY Affiliate Sites Like StumbleUpon, Scoop.it, Digg etc. with TOP Quality Content and Gets You Better Ranking, Viral Traffic from Top 7 Social Media Platforms, Sales and Commissions on Autopilot.
WP GDPR Fix Elite Single SiteThe WP GDPR Fix Works with your blog or any other custom implementation of Wordpress including e-com stores. It ensures compliance on 7 key GDPR requirements.Just plug it in and set it up in less than 3 minutes for faster GDPR compliance. It implements
LaunchShark Volume 2 Shark Club3 Quick Start Marketing Page Templates and Training, Plus AT LEAST 3 New Templates Every Month! In-depth, "watch over my shoulder" core strategy training where I break down how and when to use each type of template so that you are deploying the right temp
Mobiflux Developer Edition ProGet the developer rights to WP Mobiflux and legally implement WP Mobiflux on your client’s side. Just tell them that what all they can do with WP Mobiflux and how they can get sales and leads.Then, just install it on their site and charge them a setup
IMC Conversion PopupPromote All-In-One Conversion, Tracking and Analysis SUITE that will blow your mind and make upto $100/sale + RECURRING COMMISSIONS for Life
Livecaster ResellerLive Caster PRO solves the real world problem of grabbing traffic and you already know that. But what you don’t know is that you can generate cash from it also.Want to know how, by becoming a Whitelabel Reseller. We will provide you with all the marketi
LeadsTunnel - Unlimited LicenseCustom FB Connect Tool Allows You To Connect Your Facebook Advertising with our tool to auto-send to over 21+ autoresponders, CRM, and webinar platforms. Unlimited License and No Rebills.
EverLesson Agency Split Payment versionEverLesson is a Complete online system for managing your entire membership site. It produces the most beautiful, highly profitable membership sites in a matter of minutes. These memberships will keep the members engaged and hungry for more of your product
SpyCom - ClipsReel PROClipsReel is a modern, A.I. based automatic storyboarding and video creation web based software. Using ClipsReel you can turn any article, blogpost or webpage into a stunning video.
Viking MPLR Annual 2017Viking PLR is an awesome collection of internet marketing related PLR packages each including a free report, an ebook, and a video course. These packages come with full private label rights and can be rebranded if you so choose. :)
Quotamator DIAMOND PROQuotamator DIAMOND PRO - 15X Your Traffic With The BIG Publishers SECRET Formula, Instantly!
ATL - DIAMOND Upgrade - PROThe Affiliate Traffic Lab is a 100% cloud based software that creates traffic getting videos that you can rank on Google and Youtube in minutes to get you free traffic, leads and sales.
WP Toolkit Developers License600+ Premium Themes and Plugins with Developers Rights
WP Toolkit is a simply massive library of Premium WordPress Tools, offered at literally ‘pennies on the dollar’, complete with Developers rights...
Healthy Primal Living- UpsellBrand New, High Converting Biz in a Box You Can Sell As Your Own And Keep 100% Of The Cash In Your Pockets For Years To Come
VidRankXpress ProA Revolutionary 1-Click Software Turns ANY Video into Endless Traffic Machine That Gets Page 1 Ranking on YouTube and Google and Drives Tons of Traffic from TOP Social Giants on 100% Autopilot.
TopStorySites ProA Cloud Based App That Builds INSTANT 1-Click AUTHORITY Affiliate Sites Like StumbleUpon, Scoop.it, Digg etc. with TOP Quality Content and Gets You Better Ranking, Viral Traffic from Top 7 Social Media Platforms, Sales and Commissions on Autopilot.
ATL - GOLD Upgrade - LITE DSThe Affiliate Traffic Lab is a 100% cloud based software that creates traffic getting videos that you can rank on Google and Youtube in minutes to get you free traffic, leads and sales.