CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — A suspect in the killing of a mother and her three children was arrested in Maryland on Friday, hours after their bodies were found inside a home in Chester.

Shortly before 5 a.m. on Friday, Nov. 18, officers were called to the 4200 block of Laurel Oak Road for a reported disturbance at a residence in the area.

Upon their arrival, officers entered the residence to perform a welfare check and found four shooting victims. All four victims were pronounced dead at the scene.

Police have now identified the victims as 39-year-old JoAnna M. Cottle, 13-year-old Kaelyn M. Parson, 4-year-old Kinsey M. Cottle and 4-year-old Jayson L. Cottle. Police said JoAnna Cottle was the mother of the three children and all four victims lived at the residence.

Following an investigation, police identified the suspect as 35-year-old Jonah L. Adams. Adams — of the 11400 block of Saint Martha Court in Waldorf, Maryland — was previously in a relationship with JoAnna Cottle and is the father of Kinsey and Jayson Cottle, according to police.

35-year-old Jonah L. Adams was identified by police as the suspect in a Chesterfield mass shooting on Friday, Nov. 18. The victims included a mother and her three children. (Photo: Chesterfield County Police)

Chesterfield detectives obtained warrants for Adams’ arrest on four counts of first-degree murder. Adams was arrested by agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) near his residence in Maryland and currently remains in custody in that state.

Police, first responders investigate a deadly shooting on the 4200 block of Laurel Oak Road that claimed multiple victims on Friday, Nov. 18. Credit: 8News/Sabrina Shutters
Police, first responders investigate a deadly shooting on the 4200 block of Laurel Oak Road that claimed multiple victims on Friday, Nov. 18. Credit: 8News/Sabrina Shutters

Lt. Col. Chris Hensley made public statements at the Chesterfield Police Headquarters at 4:30 p.m. According to Hensley, Joanna Cottle was the person who actually called the police.

Cottle saw Adams outside the residence, prompting her to call 911. Hensley said she remained on the line until gunshots were heard and the phone went silent.

Adams was reportedly in the area at the time of the shooting, according to Hensley. He also reportedly had a history — with a protective order against him. Hensley would not confirm whether or not the protective order was for Cottle or her family.

“Those are the worst scenes involving kids,” Hensley said. “There’s no cop that forgets a scene like that.”

Detectives are continuing to investigate the incident and are calling on anyone with information to contact the Chesterfield County Police Department at 804-748-1251.