Two people have been charged with the murders of three children who died in an arson attack in their home in Salford.
Zac Bolland, 23, and Courtney Brierley, 20, are charged with three counts of murder, four counts of attempted murder and one of arson with intent to endanger life.
The pair are due to appear at Manchester and Salford magistrates court today, Greater Manchester Police (GMP) said.
14-year-old Demi Pearson, eight-year-old Brandon Pearson and seven-year-old Lacie Pearson – died in the attack in Walkden on 11 December.
Their three-year-old sister, Lia, and mother, Michelle Pearson, 35, remain in hospital following the “targeted” attack.
Relatives have said the family were living in fear of an attack for two weeks and had reportedly tightened security at their home. They had a device fitted by firefighters to their letterbox to prevent flammable materials being poured through.
Detectives are investigating whether the suspects scaled scaffolding outside the home to pour an accelerant down the chimney of the family home on Jackson Street.
Ch Supt Wayne Miller said the police were treating the incident as a targeted attack after recovering CCTV from the area. He thanked the members of the public who had come forward with information, saying the force now had a “much deeper understanding of the devastating events”.
“The loss of a child in any circumstance is unthinkable, to lose three in such deplorable circumstances words cannot describe,” said Miller.
“My heart breaks for them, it really does. We’re doing all that we can to get them the answers they quite rightly deserve.”