When her husband discovered his son covered in blood, he immediately called the police and paramedics.
Trigger warning: This article contains graphic descriptions of violence that some readers may find distressing
When Tomislav Perinovic returned home from work, he discovered his entire family had been murdered. Katie Perinovic murdered her three children, Matthew, Anna, and Claire, and then committed suicide. When the tragedy occurred, Tom, the deceased's father and husband, was out shopping, reported ABC News.
An unthinkable family tragedy in Melbourne is being treated as murder-suicide. Homicide detectives now believe Katie Perinovic killed her three little children before taking her own life as shattered neighbours shed new light on a troubled mother's mental health battle. #7NEWS pic.twitter.com/JhSmdTQdYY— 7NEWS Australia (@7NewsAustralia) January 15, 2021
Katica, affectionately known as Katie, was suffering from her first episode of psychosis when she brutally murdered her children and then committed suicide at their Tullamarine home last January. When Perninovic discovered Matthew covered in blood, he immediately called the police and paramedics. Later, when emergency personnel arrived at his home, he received another severe shock when he entered the rearing room and discovered his two daughters and wife dead. "They're all dead," he yelled. Because the police believed Tom had murdered his children and wife, he was yelled at and treated harshly. He was released the next day after being questioned by Homicide Squad detectives and examining CCTV footage, phone records, Triple -0 calls, and interviewing 77 witnesses. Although the police apologized for their actions, Tom also demanded a written apology.
According to Coroner Jamieson's documentary on this case, Tomislav, the grieving father of the three children, said at the inquest, "I went out that day to buy my family a TV...the kids were so excited. I returned home to find my family had died." Katica's mental health deterioration is discussed in the documentary. She was experiencing her first episode of psychosis, and the coroner determined that the 42-year-old physiotherapist's care was "sub-optimal" and recommended that Schizophrenia psychiatric guidelines be changed.
It is mentioned in the article on ABC news that Tom told the coroner that it was a huge shame that his wife did not get the same level of care that she gave her own patients. He further added that “Katica Peronovic was a great mother and I still cannot believe that my wife would do this to our lovely, beautiful kids.” Concerning Katica's mental health, the coroner reported that her mental health began to deteriorate in late 2020 when loved ones noticed she was paranoid and found herself talking to herself. Katica abruptly left her physiotherapy job, severing ties with a clinic where she had worked for 16 years. She was eventually referred to the NorthWestern Mental Health Service and given antipsychotic medication, which she overdosed on a few weeks later.
People were also found leaving strange handwritten notes on Tom's wife and children's tombstones. He asked that such handwritten notes not be left. "I've begged people to stop," he said. According to the coroner, she also missed a psychiatric appointment just days before she died.
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