09/22/2012 02:43 pm ET

Dawn Brown, Clearwater Mother, Kills 2 Kids Then Commits Suicide: Cops

A mother and her two children are dead after an apparent murder-suicide near Clearwater, Florida, early Saturday morning.

Sheriff's officials told The Tampa Bay Times it appears that Dawn Brown, 34, killed her two children, and then hanged herself with a cord from a ceiling fan.

According to NBC News, Pinellas County Deputies responded to a call for assistance shortly after 2 a.m., however, a neighbor told Tampa Bay Online that he received a text at 3 a.m. about trouble at the Brown's house, but didn't see the text until 6 this morning. William Lavold then went next door, saw the what happened and called the police. He didn't say who sent the text.

Lavold told the website that he knew the family well, and was close to Brown's two sons, Zander, 9, and Zayden, 5 -- and had even planned on taking them for a ride on his boat today.

The investigation is still on going, and the children's cause of death will be released pending the results of an autopsy, according to a news release from the sheriff's office.

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