A woman and her two children were killed after a mentally challenged man in Gumla district of Jharkhand attacked them with an axe on Saturday.

Enraged over the incident, the villagers later beat the accused to death, police said.

Sudama Chaudhary, Palkot police station-in-charge, said Chotu Munda attacked Bandhain Munda and her children, three-year-old Vipin Munda and one-year-old Divyang Munda, with an axe on Saturday afternoon.

“The accused caused injuries on the victims’ necks, following which they died,” he added.

Police said as per preliminary investigation, the villagers — after hearing the cries of the victims — arrived at the spot and tried to catch the man to hand him over to police. However, he attacked the villagers and injured two of them.

The villagers then thrashed him and he died soon after, police said.

Police said Chotu Munda, a resident of the same village, is not related to the victims’ family but stayed near their house.

“The family members of the accused have also admitted that he was mentally challenged. No property or any other angle has emerged in the preliminary investigations as the cause of the crime,” said a police official.

Police said the bodies have been sent for post-mortem and further investigation is on.

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