Cousin of Iona Lakes family murder speaks to...

Posted at 6:34 PM, Jan 28, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-28 18:34:28-05

A family member of a murdered mother and two daughters is speaking out believing the boyfriend is responsible for the death of the family in Iona Lakes Apartments that took place on Sunday morning. 

Patrick Carlopoli is facing several charges including second-degree murder in Tammy Modlin's death and conspiracy to commit murder in the deaths of her two daughters.

Legal experts say the conspiracy charge indicates Modlin may have taken part in the killings.  Modlin's cousin, Chrystal Hardiman, says she can't believe that to be true. 

In a message, Hardiman writes she didn't speak to her cousin Tammy often, but says what she remembers best is her cousin's smile.

"She always lit up the room with her beautiful smile," Hardiman said.

You can see that smile in picture Hardiman shared of Tammy Modlin with FOX 4. A picture of happier times, before she died along with her daughters, 16 year old Montana, and 3 year old Jeannie,  and the family dog.

Jeannie who would have turned 4 on February 28th.

Modlin's boyfriend, Patrick Carlopoli, called 9-1-1 on Sunday to report the dead bodies in his Iona Lakes Apartment. After his arrest, published reports indicate he told investigators about a suicide pact between him and Modlin. The Lee County Sheriff won't confirm the pact but Modlin's cousin says she doesn't believe it, writing: 

"The Tammy Jo (as our family calls her) that we know would never hurt someone, especially her girls. Our family believes he committed these crimes and is trying to get out of it."

Hardiman also shares her cousin was trying to leave the relationship on several occasions but her family believed Patrick was controlling her.

While it's still unclear what exactly happened in building 39, the investigation continues and so does Hardiman's Grief, saying:

"Our family is absolutely distraught and in mourning as they know we will need to plan 3 Funerals." 
Carlopoli is in custody with no bond.  His trial is expected to start February 22nd.
Meanwhile, the family says funerals for Modlin and the girls will most likely be held in Indiana where most of the family lives.