Couple dies in murder/suicide

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An elderly married couple who was discovered dead in their home in East Knoxville on March 16 were the victims of a murder/suicide, authorities have ruled.

 E-911 dispatchers received a call at 1:39 p.m. from a man who reported that there were  two gunshot victims at the house — his wife and himself. 

First responders found the pair, both 79, dead from gunshot wounds to the head, according to a report from the Knox County Sheriff’s Office. The woman’s body was found in a bedroom while her husband was discovered on the deck.

Investigators found two letters, one addressed to the police and the other to some of the man’s former colleagues.  The letters explained that the woman was in declining health and her husband had decided to take both their lives.

Their deaths occurred four days after the woman’s birthday. 

As of Friday evening, there have been five homicides so far in 2021 in the unincorporated areas of Knox County under the jurisdiction of the Sheriff’s Office.

Hard Knox Wire takes a case-by-case approach when deciding whether to name the victims in tragedies such as this one. In this instance, the Sheriff’s Office explained that the surviving family wished for anonymity. Also, for obvious reasons, there will be no criminal case brought through the courts. We therefore decided against naming them in this article.

Published March 26, 2021