SHIRLEY, Ind. – A family of three is dead after an apparent murder-suicide in Shirley, a small town spanning Henry and Hancock counties.
Police say it happened Thursday around 10:30 p.m. in the 2400 block of North Mechanicsburg Road.
Henry County Sheriff Richard McCorkle said a man shot his wife and daughter before turning the gun on himself outside of their home. Friday afternoon, McCorkle identified the deceased as Justin Langdon, his wife Amanda Langdon and their daughter Kendal Langdon. Police say the family all died from gunshots wounds.
"The mother was along with the father outside and the daughter was in a pole barn in a camper. I hope she did not know what was happening," said Sheriff McCorkle.
Investigators believe the shooting followed a domestic dispute between the couple who neighbors believe had been recently separated.
"I have no indication at this time," he said. "[I] haven't been advised that he left any messages or anything."
Police say Justin called 911 and told dispatch he killed two of his family members, and then said he was going to kill himself when police got there.
"If you have a heart, you are going to be upset about this. It is tragic, I do not know somebody could do that to their child," said neighbor Patrick Garrett.
Neighbors say the family seemed to live a quiet life and Henry County police records incident there were no previous runs to the home.
"Nothing that jumps out at us. Just one of those situations where we believe it is domestic and very tragic," said Sheriff McCorkle.
This is the second double murder-suicide police have investigated in the past three years. In August 2015, three bodies were found in a home just east of Knightstown. In that case, 48-year-old Joseph Horn killed his 11-year-old daughter and 5-year-old son before shooting himself. His wife had filed for divorced two weeks prior to the shootings.
McCorkle said such cases are hard to stomach.
"I mean, this is the second one of these cases where children are taken, and I don't understand why the innocent have to die. It breaks your heart," he said.
As family members try to make sense of the tragic situation, the sheriff's office is offering counseling.
"And for those of us who are parents and grandparents, it's tough. It's a tough case."