Zakieya Avery
Montgomery County (Md.) Police

On Monday, Zakieya Avery, 31, admitted in a Montgomery County, Md., courtroom that she killed her two youngest children during what she thought was an exorcism. She also admitted to attempting to kill her two other children, according to the Washington Post.

Self-described as the "demon assassin," Avery, along with her roommate, Monifa Sanford, 24, reportedly stabbed the four children, ages 18 months to 8, with a serrated paring knife. They said at the time that it was the only way to cleanse them of demons.

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According to the Washington Post, Brian Shefferman, Avery's attorney, will try to show that Avery should be sent to a locked hospital by proving that she was legally insane at the time of the attacks. She had also apparently been hospitalized several times for mental illness before this case.

Sanford was ruled criminally insane last year by a judge in Montgomery County, based on the findings of state psychiatrists, and was sent to a maximum-security psychiatric hospital.

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According to a detailed summary of the crimes, during the attacks, Avery said, "Satan will not take my kids."

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Her 18-month-old was stabbed more than 20 times, and her 2-year-old was choked and stabbed in the back and chest. Avery's two surviving children, 5 and 8, watched the attacks and were later stabbed as well. They both suffered punctured lungs.

Read more at the Washington Post.