A woman and her 15-year-old son were shot and killed by a man who then turned the gun on himself while his daughter pretended to sleep in another room, police say.
Late last Thursday, a Missouri man called 911 to tell police to come to a home in Bellefontaine Neighbors. Before he hung up the call, he said responders would find three dead bodies inside, reported the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Police identified the victims as Katrina Banks, 31, and her son, Kevin Johnson, 15. They belived the man who called 911 was Banks’ fiancé, Dornubari Dugbor, 31, who died from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound under his chin.
When police arrived on the scene, they found the couple’s 4-year-old daughter, who was pretending to be asleep in her room, Bellefontaine Neighbors Police Chief Jeremy Ihler said. The little girl was present when the shooting took place, but she as unharmed.
Ihler said the little girl had heard the first shot before midnight and came into the living room to find her mother shot. However, her father told her to go back to bed and she followed his command.
“She heard several shots fired after that,” Ihler told the Post-Dispatch.
Although investigators initially thought it might be a triple homicide with the shooter on the loose, they determined it was a murder-suicide based on Dugbor’s body positioning. He was found dead slumped on a couch with his cellphone in one hand and a 9-mm semiautomatic pistol in his lap.
Banks and Dugbor were both parents of the 4-year-old girl, but Ihler said investigators weren’t sure about custody arrangements.
Police are still trying to determine a motive. The couple became engaged in January and investigators said Dugbor lived at Banks’ home on and off. Police say relatives didn’t report any mental health issues or any conflicts between the man and woman. Police haven’t heard any theories from relatives as to why he would kill them. The girl is being evaluated at a hospital, as a precaution, then will be turned over to relatives.