Two children among family of five found dead in apparent murder-suicide

A family of five, including two children, have been found dead in an Orlando, Florida, home in an apparent murder-suicide.

Neighbours were shocked by the deaths on Tuesday, with one telling the Orlando Sentinel that they felt a “sickening sadness”.

The Orlando Police Department said that officials visited the home near Lake Nona in southeast Orlando at about 1pm to perform a wellness check when they found the bodies, leading to a large police presence in the area.

Agency spokesperson Andrea Otero said in a statement that as their relatives need to be made aware, the identities of those who died weren’t going to be announced at this time.

Neighbour Justin Rossilini told the press that he lives across the street, but that he hasn’t noticed anything out of the ordinary.

“I’ve had the past two days off. We’ve been home. I didn’t hear anything”, he said, according to The Sentinel. “I have a feeling it happened Sunday night.”

The neighbour added that he spotted an officer peering through the window of a car at about 11.30am, adding that there were about 35 vehicles in the street later in the day.

Mr Rossilini added that the family moved in “about two months ago”. He said that they had a son aged 22 that he saw fetching the mail around five days previously, and two young girls, aged around six or seven.

“They seemed normal”, he added.

Neighbourhood native Lauren Ruiz, 20, told reporters that when she heard what had happened, she “felt shock, and panic, and some confusion”.

“I was hoping they got it wrong. This kind of thing never happens here”, she added.

Maribel Gomez Cordero, the Orange County Commissioner, told the press that “it’s important that leaders come out and begin to understand there’s something going on with the mental health of the community … We don’t want this to be repeated”.

Area resident Heather Collins, 46, told the reporters: “I have this sickening sadness. It’s a nightmare receiving an end like that, especially with children.”

This is one of several murder-suicides in the central part of the state in the last few months, according to The Sentinel.

A family friend killed two people before taking his own life in a home in Winter Park in April, according to the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office.

The dead were revealed to be James Calhoun, 42, Emma Cain, 49, and the shooter was found to be Shane Shearer, 48.

Police announced in June that Carlos Manuel Soto killed his wife Zuleika Del Carmen Lopez Avila and her mother Mileida Carmen Lopez Avila, as well as her son Victor Araujo Lopez, 15. He then died by suicide.

Ms Zuleika Lopez Avila had contacted the authorities six days before, sharing her worries that her husband had a firearm in the home. Police visited the apartment, but they said that they couldn’t find any evidence of violence, adding that the wife had said that she hadn’t been threatened, leading to no further measures being put in place.

Later in June at The Fountains Resort, yet another murder-suicide is alleged to have occurred, according to the Orange County Sheriff’s Office.

Both the shooter and the victim were not named, and the police said the deaths were prompted by a “domestic incident”.

The Sentinel also mentioned the Todt family murders. Anthony Todt was found living in Celebration, southwest of Orlando, with the decomposing bodies of his wife and three kids.

Megan Todt, and children Alek, 13, Tyler, 11, and Zoe, 4, were found on 13 January 2020 when he was being served an arrest warrant on federal charges of healthcare fraud connected to his physical therapy business in Connecticut.

A medical examiner said the wife and children had been dead for “at least a couple weeks” when they were discovered. Todt told a jury that he had tried to kill himself several times in numerous ways. He was convicted of first-degree murder in April.

Douglas Mateo

Douglas holds a position as a content writer at Neptune Pine. His academic qualifications in journalism and home science have offered her a wide base from which to line various topics. He has a proficiency in scripting articles related to the Health industry, including new findings, disease-related, or epidemic-related news. Apart from this, Douglas writes an independent blog and assists people in living healthy life.

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