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Man Told Wife ‘If I Can’t Have Them Neither Can You’ Before Drowning Their 3 Kids: Court Docs


NY Post

A Chicago-area man, 36-year-old Jason Karels, pleaded guilty but mentally ill on Friday to three counts of first-degree murder for the killing of his three young children. Lake County State’s Attorney Eric Rinehart announced that Karels, residing in Round Lake Beach, will face a life sentence in the Illinois Department of Corrections without the possibility of parole.

The horrifying incident occurred on June 13, 2022, when Karels admitted to drowning his children—5-year-old Bryant Karels, 3-year-old Cassidy Karels, and 2-year-old Gideon Karels. Responding to a welfare check at his residence, authorities discovered a note addressed to his estranged wife, stating, “If I can’t have them neither can you,” according to prosecutors. Following the crime, Karels was apprehended after leading police on a chase that concluded in a crash at an Interstate 80 bridge in Joliet, as reported by Round Lake Beach police. Subsequently, Karels received brief medical attention after the collision.

During the investigation, law enforcement noted that, at the time of the children’s deaths, the parents maintained shared custody but did not reside together.

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