San Diego family left suicide notes in apparent drownings

Reuters News
Posted: May 25, 2011 10:18 PM

SAN DIEGO (Reuters) - Police said on Wednesday they are investigating the apparent drowning deaths of a family of four in San Diego as a murder-suicide case after finding at least two suicide notes in their house.

The father, Alfredo Pimienta, 44, was found dead in his backyard swimming pool on Tuesday, along with his two daughters, Emily 9, and Priscilla, 17, while the body of his wife, Georgina, 38, was discovered in a bathtub, police said.

The father's body was found submerged in the water, weighed down by bricks, police said.

Police Lieutenant Gary Hassen said authorities were called to the home by a relative who had gone there that morning to discuss a family business problem and initially spotted two bodies in the pool.

Police said one suicide note had been written by the father but would not confirm the author of a second note.

The unexplained deaths shocked friends and neighbors on the quiet cul-de-sac in San Diego's Skyline section, where the Pimientas had run a family-owned towing company. County records show the couple lost their business license in 2008.

Classmates of the teenage daughter, a high school senior who had been planning to attend her prom next week, said nothing seemed to be amiss when they went with her to the movies on Monday night.

(Reporting by Marty Graham; Writing by Steve Gorman; Editing by Greg McCune)