Authorities say two young children unresponsive when they were found trapped inside a chest in a Franklin home have died.
The Norfolk district attorney’s office confirmed the deaths on Monday.
Investigators believe the children were found by family members inside a hope chest that could only be opened from the outside. The chest was in close proximity to a television that was on at a high volume.
Officials say the deaths appear to be accidental, but they remain under investigation by officers assigned to the Norfolk District Attorney’s office and the Crime Scene Services Section.
Franklin Public School officials released a statement Monday morning expressing their grief over the loss of the two elementary school students.
“The administration of the Franklin Public Schools received confirmation this morning that two of our elementary students passed away in a tragic accident on Sunday,” read the statement. “This is a sad and tragic event and our thoughts, prayers and sympathy go out to the family, friends and all those affected.”
The school planned to have a crisis team available for students, parents, and faculty in need of counseling.
Autopsies will be performed by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner to determine the cause and manner of death.