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Fresno mom very high on meth before family killing

January 25, 2012 |  1:03 pm

A Fresno mother who shot four family members before killing herself was extremely high on methamphetamine, officials said.

Aide Mendez had more than eight times the amount of methamphetamine in her system than the threshold for "bizarre behavior," Fresno County Coroner Dr. David Hadden told the Associated Press Wednesday.

People with more than 300 nanograms per milliliter of the drug in their systems tend to be at risk for bizarre behavior, Hadden said. Toxicology reports show the 23-year-old had 2,500 nanograms per milliliter in her system when she began shooting.

Fresno police said Mendez killed her 3-year-old son and 17-month-old daughter, as well as her boyfriend's cousin, before turning the gun on herself Jan. 15. The boyfriend also was shot and stabbed but survived.

Police said Mendez took video of herself on an iPad smoking meth hours before the killings.

Hadden said the high level in her system indicates frequent, long-term use.

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-- Dalina Castellanos

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