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Colo. Family May Be Murder-Suicide Victims

September 16, 2003

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) _ A man jailed last week for attacking his estranged wife returned to her apartment and apparently shot her and her two sons to death, then killed himself, authorities said.

A maintenance worker, responding Tuesday morning to calls from worried acquaintances of the family, found the body of Lolita Raghunandan, 32, inside the front door. Police discovered the bodies of the father, Rutendra Raghunandan, 32, and two sons, ages 5 and 10, in a bedroom.

Investigators believe the husband shot the others and then killed himself, Sheriff’s Sgt. Jim Groth said.

The mother and boys had moved into the apartment less than a month ago, sheriff’s Lt. Rodney Gehrett said.

Rutendra Raghunandan, who worked for the state Corrections Department, had been arrested Thursday after allegedly breaking into the apartment and assaulting his wife, Gehrett said. He was charged with burglary, assault and domestic violence and was released from jail Friday.

The victims apparently had been dead one or two days, Groth said.

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