Brother and sister drown in neighbor’s pool

Posted at 11:04 PM, Apr 14, 2013
and last updated 2013-04-14 23:04:42-04

LONG ISLAND (PIX11)– Two Central Islip siblings have died after being found at the bottom of a neighbor’s pool, just hours after being reported missing by their mother, according to Suffolk County police officials.

Police got the call at 3:30 Sunday afternoon from the children’s mother saying her five year old son and seven year old daughter had been missing for an hour from their Naples Avenue home.

After a police search with dogs and helicopters, five-year-old Ralph Knowles and his seven-year-old sister Sharon Knowles were found submerged in a backyard pool on Half Mile Road. The home where the children lived and the home with the swimming pool share a backyard fence.

The children were rushed to South Side Hospital in Bayshore where they were pronounced dead.

Neighbors showed us the six-foot stockade fence that police said was improperly installed, allowing children to climb over it.

“I saw them bring the kids out. I don’t ever want to see something like that,” neighbor Betty Rivera said crying.

Neighbors said the Knowles family had been living in this house — believed to be owned by the town for families in transition — for the last year and a half.

The investigation is ongoing.