Twin infants died after they were found unresponsive by their father at a hotel in Queens, police sources said.
The father of the 2-month-old children told police he put them down for naps in separate bassinets around noon on Friday, two law enforcement sources with knowledge of the investigation told NBC New York.
The children, a boy and a girl, were in a room at the Landing Family Shelter located at the Landing Hotel on Ditmars Boulevard, almost immediately across from LaGuardia Airport, according to police sources.
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The dad fell asleep as well at some point, and woke up at 3 p.m. to find them unconscious. He rushed with both infants to the hotel lobby, where security called 911, law enforcement sources said.
The infants were brought to Elmhurst Hospital Friday afternoon where they were pronounced dead, according to police.
Two law enforcement sources said detectives found the room where the children were sleeping was a mess and extremely hot, with a strong odor of marijuana. Both bassinets were also filled with pillows.
The shelter is run by CAMBA, which gets its funding from the city's Department of Social Services. However, there was no evidence to indicate the shelter had any responsibility for their deaths at this point of the investigation.
City Council Member Francisco Moya, who represents the area where the East Elmhurst shelter is located, called for an investigation into their security and safety practices.
"This tragedy marks the second and third deaths tied to The Landing in just two months," Moya said in a statement Friday evening. "With shelter should come safety but residents and neighbors of The Landing have concerns and deserve answers about what is happening inside the facility."
Isaac McGinn, a spokesman for the city Department of Social Services, said in a statement, "This is a heartbreaking tragedy. We offer our condolences to the family and will provide them with any and all support that we can during this difficult time."
The medical examiner will determine the cause of death for the children after an autopsy in the coming days.
No arrests have been made.