IRMO A husband, wife and their two young children are dead following an apparent murder-suicide near Irmo, according to the Richland County Sheriffs Department.
(update: the family was identified Thursday)
The four were found Wednesday morning after police were called around 10:30 to the home at 1 Forest Walk Court in the Riverwalk neighborhood off Broad River Road.
The children were discovered in their own bedrooms, and the two adults were found together in their bedroom, said Sgt. Curtis Wilson, spokesman for the Richland County Sheriffs Department. Each of the four was shot in the upper body, he said.
A handgun was found near the father, Wilson said. The sheriffs departments initial assessment is that the incident was a domestic situation. Wilson said authorities would investigate whether any previous domestic violence calls had been made to the house.
The mans mother had not heard from her son in a couple of days, went to the house, discovered the bodies and called authorities, Wilson said.
Neither the sheriffs department nor the Richland County Coroners Office would identify the victims. But Richland County property records show the house is owned by Sheddrick and Kia Miller, who bought the home in 2012.
Wilson said authorities are working to determine when the four were killed.
Rachel Hinson, 25, said she had attended bible study at the familys home and went to Kingdom Hall of Jehovahs Witnesses with them. She described them as a good family. She said she thought each of the children was younger than 5.
Hinsons grandmother lives near the familys house.
Its confusing, and its not understandable why something like that would happen, Hinson said.
South Carolina ranks worst in the nation when it comes to men killing women, according to a report by the Violence Policy Center in Washington.
The most-recent Midlands murder-suicide of this magnitude, in which four or more people were killed, was in 2011 when Chancey Foy Smith killed 27-year-old Amanda Peake and her two children in Lexington Countys Red Bank community before turning the gun on himself.
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