A woman from a Dallas suburb who was reported missing this week was found dead inside her sport-utility vehicle in a shopping center parking lot with her three children alive in the back seat, police said on Friday.

Police in Frisco, about 25 miles north of Dallas, discovered the body of Christine Woo, 39, in a Honda Pilot at a Target parking lot on Thursday evening. The cause of death has not yet been determined. Police would not say if there were signs of trauma on Woo.

The children, a 5-year-old girl, 3-year-old boy and 1-year-old girl, were taken to a hospital for evaluation, police said. Local media reported that they were severely dehydrated.

RELATED: Father dragged by Boston school bus driver: Video 

Brandon Woo, her husband, reported on Tuesday that his family had been missing since Monday, police said. 

Surveillance video released by authorities showed the mother and her children shopping at a local drug store the same day about 15 miles from where she was found dead.

"She's a loving mother," her husband told local TV station WFAA. "She's like a lioness, she would fight for her kids, she would never hurt her kids at all."