Three children, who were allegedly brutally killed by their own father at their home in West Sacramento on September 13, will finally be laid to rest at a closed casket public memorial service and funeral this weekend.
The service for 11-year-old Kelvin Kheng Hodges, 9-year-old Julia Kao Chong Hodges, and 7-month-old Lucas Kong Hodges, will be led by Pastor Micah Moreno of Southport Church on October 7 at 4 p.m. at the River Cities Funeral Chapel at 910 Soule St., West Sacramento, 95691, the Sacramento Bee reports.
Robert Hodges was charged with three counts of murder with “special circumstances and attempted murder” for allegedly killing his children and trying to choke his wife, Mai Sheng Hodges. Following the gruesome incident, the mother has chosen to use the name Mai Sheng Vang instead.
While Hodges’ charges make him eligible for the death penalty, Yolo County prosecutors have so far not indicated whether such a sentence will be pursued.
During the brief court hearing on Monday, Judge David Rosenberg in Yolo Superior Court scheduled a return date for a hearing on October 20 at 9 a.m.
According to the Sacramento Bee, Yolo County District Attorney Jeff Reisig previously described the crimes as “willful, deliberate and premeditated.”
While Reisig noted during a press conference that the two older siblings were killed with a belt, he did not say how the infant was killed. So far, the exact manner in which the children were killed has not been publicly revealed.
Hodges, who previously pleaded not guilty to the charges, was apprehended by California Highway Patrol officers just hours following the alleged murders after they spotted his car near Interstate 80 and West El Camino Avenue.
The police were earlier notified of the triple homicide after neighbors reported a domestic violence incident. Hodges had reportedly choked his wife who was later seen by neighbors running out of their second floor apartment. It was at that moment when he was believed to have killed the children inside their home.
Since the incident, neither Robert Hodges nor Mai Sheng Vang have spoken publicly about what actually transpired that night.
Jessica Moreno, the wife of the pastor leading the service, began a GoFundMe campaign for Vang after the crime. As of this writing, the campaign has raised over $35,000 out of the $40, 000 goal.
The children are survived by their mother and grandparents as well as “aunts, uncles, and countless friends.”
The burial will be held Sunday at noon at the East Lawn Sierra Hills Memorial Park, 5757 Greenback Lane, Sacramento.