Police in Duluth, Minnesota, identified Brandon Taylor Cole-Skogstad, 29, as the man behind the murder of a family of four and their dog last Thursday.
“I have made the absolutely horrid choice in not only taking my life, but the lives of my aunt, Riana Lou Barry, my uncle Sean Barry, and my two sweet, beyond angelic cousins Sadie Lucille Barry and Shiway Elizabeth Barry,” Cole-Skogstad confessed in a Facebook post on Wednesday morning, according to Fox 21.
That post prompted a welfare check by police officers where they tried but failed to contact Cole-Skogstad, according to the Duluth News Tribune. After being informed that Cole-Skogstad had access to a weapon, the police approached the family’s home just after noon on Wednesday when police officers state they heard a single gunshot, the Duluth Tribune added.
Duluth police identified the five family members killed Wednesday in what they say was a murder-suicide. Two of the victims were children. https://t.co/jWsIvNa0iK
— 48 Hours (@48hours) April 21, 2022
A search of the house revealed all five relatives dead in the home as well as the family dog, reported Fox News 21. Preliminary investigations led police officers to believe all four family members were shot in their sleep before Cole-Skogstad turned the gun on himself.
“In 32 years, we haven’t seen anything like this, where we’ve had four victims of a homicide,” Duluth Police Chief Mike Tusken said at a news conference, according to the Duluth Tribune. “I’ve got to tell you, it’s tough on all of us. It’s tough on our cops. Our police officers, a lot of them may have families. Any time you go into a situation like this and you see that tragedy, it is terribly heart-wrenching. And you can’t un see it,” Tusken added.
Tusken stated that there were no reports of gunshots during the night and that, at present, it would be “entirely speculative” to say what Cole-Skogstad’s motive had been, the Duluth Tribune reported.
Family friends have started a GoFundMe page to raise funds for the funeral and burial expenses.
“Things happened today that can’t be undone. Tonight we are a community in pain and shock, sharing a sorrow for the loss of our people,” Duluth Mayor Emily Larson tweeted Wednesday. “My heart, like yours, absolutely hurts for the pain of loved ones and the fear people likely experienced on their final day here with us.”
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