A father of three, whom he adopted with his same-sex partner, was arrested after they were burned in a house fire in Brazil.
Ricardo Reis de Farias and Vieira, 33, were arrested Wednesday in the southern state of Sao Paulo after a fire in his home that killed biological siblings Fernanda, 14, and Gabriel, nine, and two-year-old Lorenzo.
Police reportedly became suspicious of Ricardo after telling them he couldn’t hear his children in the flame, but the neighbors remembered hearing one of the boys shout, “Dad, don’t leave us here to die . “
Ricardo Reis de Farias and Vieira, 33 (right), were arrested in Brazil after a fire killed his three children Fernanda (right), Gabriel (bottom left) and Lorenzo (center), whom he adopted with a same-sex partner, Leandro , 36 (left)
The biological siblings Fernanda (left) and Gabriel (right) were adopted by the couple in 2014, while the youngest, Lorenzo, was adopted in 2019
Ricardo claims he was woken up by smoke at his home in Sao Paulo on Wednesday morning before running to the police because he could not get into his nursery
Ricardo had adopted the two older children in 2014 with partner Leandro Jose Reis de Farias and Vieira, 36, and the couple then adopted the youngest son in 2019.
Ricardo and Leandro had been married for 15 years but had recently separated and shared custody, with the children spending a week in each house.
They were at Ricardo’s on Wednesday evening when a fire broke out in their room, local media reports.
Ricardo told investigators that he had been woken up by smoke and could not get into the nursery. He ran to the local police station for help.
The police ran back to the house and broke the door of the children’s room, but the cold didn’t enter because the flames were too hot.
Instead, they had to wait for firefighters to arrive, who managed to get the fire under control so the officers could enter.
Once inside, they found the charred remains of the three children – one in the bathroom, one in the corner of the bedroom, and one by the window.
Police became suspicious of Ricardo (right) for “inconsistencies” in his story, including claiming that the children never called when a neighbor said one shouted, “Don’t leave us here to die.”
Ricardo (right) had been married to Leandro (left) for 15 years, but the couple had recently separated and shared custody of their children
Leandro, who lives 50 miles away, arrived a short time later and in shock.
Police announced on Thursday that Ricardo had been arrested, but stressed that he has not yet been charged and they are still investigating several possibilities.
Police Chief Eliardo Jordão said the arrest would allow officers to investigate more quickly, including investigating some inconsistencies in Ricardo’s statements.
Jordão said disagreements included Ricardo’s claim that he was awakened by smoke when neighbors remembered hearing the children scream.
He said the door to the nursery was also locked and the police wanted to know who locked it and why.
The officers are also trying to find out why the youngest child, who normally sleeps in a room with Ricardo, instead slept in the same room with his siblings.
Police say they arrested Ricardo to help with their investigation and that he is not yet a suspect and has not brought charges (his burned out house, picture).
According to Leandro, Ricardo had tried to get back together a few months ago, claiming it made no sense to live without a united family.
Friends and family of the two men say they are devoted to their children and cannot imagine that either man would do anything to harm them.
In 2019, the family was even interviewed on television to talk about the benefits of child adoption.
‘There is no right or wrong family. The most important thing is love, ”Fernanda had said at the time.
The investigation continues.