An Illinois man strangled his two young children before setting fire to the family home, killing himself in the process. The horror unfolded at the home of Eric, 33, and Pamela Ringenberg, 32, in Bloomington, Illinois, in the early hours of September 19. Eric was killed after hanging himself in the basement of the family’s home. His two sons, named only as CR, 2, and RR, infant, were already dead inside the house as it was engulfed in flames. Authorities say Eric killed his children prior to setting the fire. The information comes from a statement from the Bloomington Police Department.
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Eric Hid His Wife’s Cellphone Prior to Setting the Fire
The Bloomington PD statement says that Pamela Ringenberg woke up on September 19 after a smoke alarm near her bed went off. After trying “frantically” to find her cellphone to call for help, Pamela ran to a neighbors’ home for help.
Authorities say that home surveillance footage shows Eric Ringenberg hiding his wife’s cellphone in a kitchen cabinet before the fire was set. The couple’s children were already dead before the fire was set after being strangled. Eric, set the fire, and committed suicide in the home’s basement. All three were pronounced dead at the scene by the McLean County Coroner’s Office. Pamela Ringenberg is being treated at a local hospital for smoke inhalation.
The Couple Both Work at State Farm
WGLT reports that the family lived at 14 Brittany Court in Bloomington, Illinois. Both Eric and Pamela Ringenberg are graduates of Illinois State.
The Pantagraph in Illinois reports that the couple worked for insurance broker State Farm. A spokesperson for the company says that a grief counsellor will be present on site for employees in the wake of the tragedy.
According to his LinkedIn page, Eric worked in IT analytics for State Farm. While Pamela’s LinkedIn says she works as a compliance analyst. On her Facebook page, Pamela is shown to be active in fundraising for St. Jude’s Children Hospital.