SALEM (CBS) — A mother in Salem is accused of trying to kill her two young children and burn their apartment in a failed attempt to cover up the crime.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Carl Stevens reports

Twenty-five-year-old Tanicia Goodwin was arraigned Monday in Salem District Court on two counts of assault with intent to murder, two counts of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and arson.

She did not enter a plea and was ordered held without bail.

Firefighters were called to Goodwin’s seventh-floor unit at the Salem Heights Apartments for a small kitchen fire just after 9 p.m. Sunday.

That’s when they found Goodwin’s 8-year-old son, Jamal, and his 3-year old sister Erica with their throats slashed.

Prosecutor Melissa Woodard said Jamal told authorities his mother did it.

Jamal’s wound was nearly ear-to-ear and so deep his trachea was exposed, Woodard said.  Erica’s wounds are not as serious.

They were rushed to Children’s Hospital in Boston in critical condition.

Investigators said Goodwin had broken off the inside doorknob from the apartment, sealed the air vents with duct tape, covered the sprinklers and disabled the smoke alarm.

Hours after the fire, Goodwin showed up at Salem Police headquarters with a superficial knife wound on her neck and smelling like lighter fluid, investigators said..

Police say she shattered a lobby window and later confessed, implying it was supposed to be a murder-suicide.

“I’m not supposed to be here. I’m not supposed to be alive,” Goodwin told police, according to Woodard. “I did what I had to do to protect my children.”

Woodard said there were no indications of drug or alcohol use.

There’s still no word on a motive.

Goodwin is due back in court next week.

Comments (45)
  1. Rob Cleary says:

    Celebrate Diversity!

    1. Imjustsayin says:

      That’s what we do every time we hear a story about a white person diddling yet another child. Celebrate Diversity! Casey Anthony is like queen of the child-killers…. what color is she?

      1. Rob Cleary says:

        Casey Anthony was found innocent in a court of law by a jury of her peers. She dis innocent. She didn’t do anything.

        What is it with Liberal Democrats and the truth? and bathing?

    2. petem says:

      Just when we think you sank as low as possible down you go again Rob. Disgusting D-bag…

      1. Michelle Fuller Fitzgerald says:

        This is Rob’s standard comment for every story. He’s a racist. Don’t get sucked in by him.

      2. Edward Ellis says:

        He’s just a nasty person.

  2. Thank You Soldiers says:

    I am guessing she was on prescription anti-psychotic medicine or at one point she was and is now off them. What a mess this is. Who does this to any children let alone their own flesh and blood?

    1. petem says:

      Someone who is deeply mentally disturbed…hope & pray the children make it…

      1. Rob Cleary says:

        then in five years we will get the privilege of incarcerating them.

      2. firemanmark says:

        Are you a doctor? How do you know she’s mentally disturbed? Just asking because you asked me the same question? Why did you jump on my comments?Oh,I know.Another firefighter hater.You’re a moron.

  3. emom says:

    wonder if there is history of issues with her… How many times has chold services paid a visit,,, How long has the meds been flowing.. Why didnt anyone see the writing on the wall before this .. Oh because we love to give people 2nd, 3rd, 8th chances at being a parent…. when will we learn. , I pray the children survive, and find peace .. they did not deserve this at all…

    1. Thank You Soldiers says:

      I don’t have any children but I can’t see any reason to harm your own flesh and blood. As the story goes on it will be interesting to see if you are spot on when you ask the question is there a history with this lady and child services and such. Heads will roll if it comes out that this lady did have previous issues and had no business having custody of her children.

    2. Shawntel says:

      I read more into the story from a different website it said that in 2007 she gave custody of her son away to her cousin because she wanted to get her GED and couldn’t support him. In june 2010 she wanted custody back after just giving birth to her daughter. she told the court she wanted them to be a family. Then two years later she decieded to hurt both her kids.. Why did it no one knows i think she was better of letting her cousin keep her son.. mayb this wouldn’t have happened but its over it happened… keep your head up kids life gets better. If anyone is curious bout the website and wants to read more: 8504&format=comments#CommentsArea

  4. Grace says:

    What does this have to do with color – sick stories like this are in the news all the time for all races. Casey Anthony comes to mind and she is as white as they come. Mentally disturbed people are of all ages and races. I just hope this children and find a good home with a stable family.

    1. Edward Ellis says:


  5. fred says:

    She is 22 and has an 8 year old so her first was the result of being raped. Dare I ask where the father(s) of these children are. I am sure we have been supporting this woman for the last 8 years. Doesn’t matter what her race is. Could she be from a single parent household herself? The destruction of the family unit is the problem.She should have been encouraged to give up her first child to some capable loving people but instead was supported by the state – and this is what we get. It’s time to end welfare for unwed mothers – let them give up these kids for adoption and maybe they can continue their education and learn from their mistakes and perhaps be a tax paying productive citizen some day.

    1. Cis says:

      destuction of the family unit – really ? so all the single parents and mother/fatherless kids due to 9/11, disease, war, crime are somehow doomed, not worthy of our compassion, and state or federal support? all widow(ers) should have their spouses SS taken away? what about single foster parents and legal guardians doing their best to raise healthy and responsible kids that aren’t their own ?

      1. fred says:

        Getting knocked up as a 14 year old and then again when she is 19 does not instill compassion in me.When you put her on welfare and expect that she will be able to raise a non state dependent family is not compassionate – it just encourages more irresponsible behavior. I did not say anything about victims of all these things that you listed who became single parents through no fault of their own. Your letting your liberal lunacy get the better of you. Welfare is there to help those in need when they need it – not to become a lifestyle. If this girl had put the first kid up for adoption perhaps she could have finished school and made something of her life instead of slitting her children’s throats and spending much of the rest of her life in jail. What are the prospects for these kids if they ever recover from their trauma. Compassion didn’t do squat for them.

    2. PeeWee says:

      How do you know she was raped? She could have had consensual sex and got pregnant. And she’s 25, so that means she had her first child when she was 17.

      1. fred says:

        I thought I heard 22 but the story says 25 so i should be corrected.Too gruesome.

    3. Barney says:

      You commented that her first was the result of being raped (obviously as a 13 year old can not consent to sex) and yet now you’re complaining about having to “support” this woman for the past 8 years and you have no sympathy for someone getting “knocked up”. I can only wish it was possible to rape a man and saddle him with the burden of a living breathing reminder of his sexual assault that he is now responsible for caring for FOREVER so that you could take a walk in someone elses shoes.

      It is clearly an assumption (a racist one no less…don’t get to patting yourself on the back for being politically correct just yet) to assume that your tax dollars have been supporting this woman for the last 8 years. What makes you think she has never held a job? Does the article indicate this somewhere? I guess it should be mandatory for poor black single teenage mothers to give up their kids for adoption? And then who will take care of all of these “adoptable” poor black children? As if there aren’t 100s of thousands of children sitting around in foster care waiting for someone to adopt them… You have a ridiculously narrowminded viewpoint of how society works.

    4. petem says:

      what a repulsive narrow minded world view you have. It must be nice to have all the answers. What do you know of this girls life? Nothing in fact except what happened last night. Surely bad decisions were a part of it, but clearly so was mental illness. No one does what she has allegedly done out of the blue…
      I wonder if she was influenced to keep her babies by family or church members not wanting to break up a family. The thing is that we don’t know and making sweeping statements about what she should have done 8 years ago is pointless (except of course making you feel like you are omnipotent)….

    5. Shawntel says:

      That wouldn’t be fair to some of the other mothers, they have a right to have their kids. My mom is a single parents and is short on my money and im glad she didnt give me up i couldn’t imagine life without my mom. Every child has a right to see their brth parents. my father left when i was 2 an we made it through just fine. This women is mental impaired and shouldn’t ever get her kids back they deserve better than her.. I pray for them everyday. <3

    6. Lizzy says:

      The result of being raped? Do you know because you raped her? I suspect the answer is no to my second question.. so it is possible she was a willing participant.. lets not make excuses for this sick excuse for a human being..

    7. Edward Ellis says:

      @ Fred : We really don’t know a thing about this terrible event. I don’t think rushing to judgement and fabricating facts does anyone any good. Please take your hateful gossip elsewhere.

    8. Jeslyn says:

      This comment is disgusting. I am an unwed mother of 2. I have supported my children all the way but god forbid if something happened and I had to go on welfare. What would a couple have over a single person like me? Sometimes the parents are better off being split. I know it was the best for my ex and I. Your a complete moron for thinking the way you do. There are coupled families on welfare as well as single parents jerk.

  6. Ron B says:

    In cases like this, why do they never START w/ the suicide?

  7. karen says:

    she should never get custody of these kids again. her family /friends either never saw warning signs or were afraid to intervene.. for the sake of the children, when you suspect a family member or friend is in crisis, don’t wait. these kids have suffered unspeakable horror. i work in health care, and have friends who were medics in the military. these injuries really get the adrenaline racing. don’t let it happen again. good luck kids, may the angels watch over you.

  8. Ben Dover says:

    I hope these kids make an excellent recovery and receive the best counciling. The mother doesn’t need help, she needs JAIL, FOREVER. No more state handouts for her, JAIL.

    Had a father done this, we would be talking death penalty.

    1. petem says:

      Great idea Ben. Throw away the key etc… of course if she was treated we may learn something from her later when her mind clears. She should never be released, because this level of breakdown isn’t something a person can comeback from, but perhaps she can help doctors learn about her illness.

      1. gramps says:

        & once the DR’s have finished their study of her….They could direct their attention/talents towards ‘Liberals’….


      2. petem says:

        You know gramps, maybe they should check you out…definitely something wrong there…

    2. Shawntel says:

      She deserves life in prison for what she did to her kids. They have the rest of their lives remembering what their own mother did to them. If it were a man he would have the death penalty but because she is a girl they will give her a lesser sentence i see she should get the death sentence if they wont give that at least life in jail will give her time to think about what she did to her kids. She wont last long in jail anyway. I pray for those kids everyday.. God pless them both.. I wish you guys the best. <3 <3 <3

  9. firemanmark says:

    But she had enough mental acuity to duct tape the vents,disable the fire alarms and cover the sprinkler heads? She endangered not only the rest of the tenents but the firefighters who responded.She is not mentally ill.She is using that as a convenient way of getting out from under taking responsibility for her actions and not having the “burden” of her kids.If people actually believe she is unfit for trial then they are gullible and delusional

    1. petem says:

      And you know she’s not mentally ill because of your medical degree from where? You and I are not capable of anything but guessing; that is why there are experts, doctors who are trained to figure this stuff out.
      Hope someone like you isn’t in charge of figuring what wrong with you if you ever go over the edge…

    2. Truthmom says:

      Fireman Mark you should keep your professional comments to Fire-related issues. Just because someone is mentally ill does not mean they are mentally “retarded”…two completely different things my friend.

      You say she is using mental illness as an excuse for not taking responsibility for her actions, what SANE person would disable the firealarms, duct tape the vents and saw off the doorknob (from the inside)? What person in their right mind slashes the throats of their own children and attempts to cut their own? In fact, I believe this to be a perfect documentation of mental illness. No mother who was not “Ill” would attempt to kill her own babies.

      1. firemanmark says:

        I never used the word “retarded”.I’m also an EMT and I’ve seen my share of all kinds of medical and psycological emergencies.So,you see,it isn’t just “fire-related” things of which I have experience.She had enough forethought to duct tape the vents,disable alarms and saw off the doorknobs.That sounds an awful lot like premeditation.And by the way,try actually reading the words and not quoting me as using the word “retarded”.People are challenged or handicapped.The “R” word is taboo and I don’t use it when describing mentally challenged or handicapped npersons.

  10. salem says:

    Great can see lot of information in salem.Its the one stop website for all information about jewellers,stores,schools,colleges,agencies and more!everything about salem.

  11. Rob Cleary says:

    Anyone seen or heard from dad?

    How come none of you libs want to discuss smearing Casey Anthony despite her being found Innocent? Don’t ever let the facts get in the way of your demented visions.

    1. Edward Ellis says:

      Why are you focusing on Race and Political Affiliation? Are you just a one trick pony ? You spew this racist/ divisive venom on several sites. I feel we should be more concerned with two kids with their throats cut. The only demented comments I’e read here are from you. Democrat and feeling good about it Obama/Biden 2012

  12. Shawntel says:

    Casey Anothy should have been guilty.. i mean she was the last one seen with her daughter and all of a sudden she just ups amd disappears.. i dont believe that at all.. i believe that that girls mother had something to do with her death.

  13. Shawntel says:

    You think her family would have saw something change in her to make her do something like this.. I mean was she even stable when she got her son back from her cousin? Does anyone know what became of the kids? Are they okay. I havent heard anything on the news about them. Poor kids <3 <3 <3

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