'Voodoo spell' blamed in mom's shock confession after 'kid, 3, dies & sibling hurt when she forces them to drink bleach'

A MOTHER accused of forcing her daughters, three and eight, to drink bleach before the youngest died, has blamed a "voodoo curse" for her actions, police say.

Joanne Zephir, 36, admitted to giving her children bleach, and drinking some herself, in a murder-suicide attempt on Mother's Day, according to the Osceola County Sheriff's office.

Police found her and her three-year-old child unconscious inside a car in a parking lot near a church in the town of Poinciana in central Florida.

The eight-year-old was reportedly found in the roadway near the church.

The three-year-old died later at the hospital, and the eight-year-old was released to a family member.

Police had been looking for Zephir due to an outstanding warrant for aggravated assault and attempted murder in Orange County.

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Zephir had been at a family member's home before police located her, and she reportedly had claimed she was going to turn herself in but wanted to spend time with her children first.

"She took both of her children and left the family member’s residence," Osceola Sheriff Marcos Lopez said in a press conference on Tuesday.

"Several hours later, she called a family member and told her that she had killed her three-year-old and the eight-year-old was also going to die and then she would kill herself,” Lopez said.

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Zephir allegedly told police that her reason for making her children drink bleach was because "the victim in Orange County must have put a voodoo spell on her, making her harm her children,” Lopez added.

The Sheriff's office reportedly plans on charging Zephir with attempted murder and child abuse once the autopsy results are in.

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