US man sentenced to death for killing his children

Timothy Jones Jr.
Timothy Jones Jr. Photo credit: Lexington County Sheriff

Warning: This article contains distressing content.

A US man has been sentenced to death for strangling his five young children in their home.

Timothy Jones Jr was sentenced on Thursday (local time). As the verdict was delivered, he reportedly showed no emotion.

The 37-year-old computer software engineer confessed he murdered his children, six-year-old Nahtahn, eight-year-old Merah, seven-year-old Elias, two-year-old Gabriel and one-year-old Abigail in August 2014.

He entered a not guilty plea by way of insanity, claiming he had undiagnosed schizophrenia.

AAP reports Jones is only the second person in five years to receive the death penalty in South Carolina.

Since 2011, no-one had been executed due to lacking drugs to carry out a lethal injection.

Solicitor Rick Hubbard said Jones killed his son Nahtahn first, after the 6-year-old admitted to damaging an electrical outlet, AAP reports.

He then left three children with the dead body as he went to cigarettes, talking his eldest girl with him.

When he returned, he strangled his remaining children, he said in a confession.