Eight people were in the home when the fire broke out around 1:15 a.m., Santone said.
Detectives are working to determine whether any of the victims were staying at the day care, Erie Police Chief Dan Spizarny told the Erie Times-News.
Valerie Lockett-Slupski told Go Erie that four of her grandchildren, two boys and two girls, were among the children who died in the fire.
"So we are all at a loss, trying to figure out how this happened", Lockett-Slupski told the newspaper. Investigators remained at the scene Sunday afternoon, with the house blocked off with yellow caution tape and an Erie police officer stationed outside.
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Go Erie reported that Pennsylvania Department of Human Services records list the daycare as being registered and compliant, with a certificate of compliance covering March 21 to March 2020. The inspection noted cigarette or cigar ashes and butts in the child care space of the home.
But a January 3 inspection noted "protective receptacle covers shall be placed in electrical outlets accessible to children 5 years of age or younger" and said the provider's planned correction was to turn "the outlets so they were closed" when not in use.
Both issues were marked as being corrected. "I will make sure that they are turned closed when not in use".
It is understood the fire started in the living room on the ground floor before it quickly spread.
The owner of the day care was flown to UPMC Mercy for treatment, Santone said. A neighbor is said to have been injured as well.