Five Oregon family members dead in suspected murder-suicide

Reuters News
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Posted: Jun 08, 2012 9:56 AM
Five Oregon family members dead in suspected murder-suicide

PORTLAND, Oregon (Reuters) - A mother and her three young children were found dead in a burning house in Salem, Oregon, on Tuesday and police said a man believed to be the children's father, whose body was discovered elsewhere, was the suspected killer.

The bodies of the woman and children were found by firefighters after a neighbor noticed smoke billowing from a house in Salem, about 50 miles south of Portland. Their names and ages were not released.

"Evidence located at the scene indicated that the victims died as a result of homicidal violence," the Salem Police Department said in a statement.

Hours after the fire, a man was found dead in a vehicle in the area of Cottage Grove, a small town about 80 miles south of Salem, police said.

"This vehicle is associated with the person of interest in this case, and at this time investigators believe this to be a domestic related murder-suicide situation," the police statement said.

Salem Police Lieutenant David Okada did not know if the police had been called to the house in the past and declined to provide any additional details. Autopsies will be conducted on the five dead family members, police said.

(Reporting by Teresa Carson: Editing by Alex Dobuzinskis and Eric Walsh)