Burglary ends in two murders, suicide

TRISH BENNETT for The Logan Daily News tbennett@circlevilleherald.com writer Published:

ORIENT (AP) -- Pickaway County Sheriff's deputies are investigating the scene of a double murder and the suspect's ultimate suicide following an apparent burglary on Ohio 762 late Saturday night.

The suspect was pronounced dead after reportedly shooting himself in front of deputies in the back yard of the home on Fairfield Road across from the Orient state prison complex.

Two gunshot victims, a male and a female, were found inside the home minutes later.

According to Sheriff Robert Radcliff, deputies responded to a 911 call from a female at the residence, believed to be one of the victims, reporting a man with a gun and requesting help.

When deputies Tracy Andrews and Shad Wright and Sgt. Timothy Carpenter arrived on the scene, they spotted the suspect leaving the back of the residence with an armful of long guns he appeared to be stealing.

Deputies ordered the suspect to drop the weapons, Radcliff said, which he did before pulling a pistol from the back of his waistband and taking his own life.

The male victim was discovered in the front room of the home, bound and wounded but still alive, Radcliff said.

He died in the Scioto Township ambulance en route to Mount Carmel West Medical Center in Columbus.

The female victim was discovered dead in a back bedroom of the home, also partially bound and a victim of gunshot wounds.

Preliminary reports indicate the suspect knew the victims and had performed odd jobs for them in the past.

Robbery appears to be the motive for the murders, he said.

The incident remains under investigation by the Pickaway County Sheriff's Office and the Bureau of Criminal Identification & Investigation (BCI).

Trish Bennett is the editor of The Circleville-Herald.

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