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Police: Man Kills Ex-Wife, Himself

January 13, 1999

RICHARDSON, Texas (AP) _ A man killed his ex-wife, mother-in-law, another woman and himself this morning in a home in an upscale neighborhood, and a 12-year-old boy escaped and was standing in the front yard when police arrived.

A shotgun was found in the house. The man and one woman died at the scene; the two other women died at a hospital.

The boy who had been inside the house was not injured. ``He heard what sounded like a gunshot,″ police Sgt. Steve Upchurch said. ``Because he was scared, he climbed out of a window.″

Authorities identified the victims as Jeannette Jeffers, 43, of Richardson; her mother, Margaret Compton, 67, of Midland; and her friend, Mary Roland, 63, also of Midland.

Police identified the suspect only as Ms. Jeffers’ ex-husband. The two had been divorced about 15 years, police Lt. Michael Hauver said. The boy was Ms. Jeffers’ son by her current husband, who was out of town on business, he said.

Police weren’t certain of a motive for the killings but believe it may have been related to recent legal action, possibly involving child support for the couple’s college-age daughter, who was not at the house, Hauver said.

It was the nation’s second quadruple killing case in less than a day.

In Indiana, 53-year-old Terry M. Jones shot his wife and two children late Tuesday before calling police and taking his own life, authorities said.

Jones’ wife, Jennifer, 34, and the couple’s 4-year-old daughter, Tessa, were pronounced dead at the scene of the shooting at their home near Frankton, a town of 1,700 people about 30 miles northeast of Indianapolis.

Jones died later at Community Hospital in Anderson, and the couple’s 8-year-old son, Jesse, died early today at Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis, said Sheriff Terry Richwine.

The sheriff said Jones had a conversation with 911 dispatchers, but he would not disclose what was said.

Update hourly