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Michigan Man Allegedly Murdered Wife, Their Three Kids Before Injuring Himself
Dawn Gillard and her three young children — Katelynn Gillard, Ronald Gillard and Joshua Gillard — were found shot to death in their home, allegedly by their own father who then shot and injured himself.
A Michigan man has been accused of killing his wife and their three young children before shooting himself.
Dawn Gillard, 40, Katelynn Gillard, 6, Ronald Gillard, 4, and Joshua Gillard, 3, were found murdered at their home in Austin Township — about 50 miles north of Grand Rapids — on Friday afternoon, the Mecosta County Sheriff’s Office said in a Monday press release. All had died from apparent gunshot wounds.
"An adult male was also located, suffering from a gunshot wound to the head,” investigators noted inn a Friday press release, adding that the man was sent to a hospital for treatment. He “continues to be in critical condition for his injuries” as of Monday.
While the man’s name has not been released, officials say he is the 51-year-old husband and father of the four people found deceased. They allege that he killed his family before turning the gun on himself.
“The male’s name is being withheld until he is arrested and formally charged,” investigators state. “In the near future, information will be limited so as to not jeopardize any future criminal proceedings, and out of respect to the family.”
The Mecosta County Sheriff’s Office say that the murders are still under investigation. They stated on Monday that there is “no information gathered at this time to indicate what led to the tragic event.”
In a statement provided to Oxygen.com, the sheriff's office explained that the office would be forwarding their investigative report to the county prosecutor once it is complete and "they make the determination as to the appropriate course of action" in terms of what charges the man might face.
“With our first responders, almost everyone at the scene had children of their own. I can tell you they took it very hard,” Mecosta County Sheriff’s Office told the Associated Press.
A candlelight vigil was held for the family at a local football field on Monday evening.
In response to the murders, Morley Stanwood Elementary School Superintendent Roger Coles released a statement stating: "There are a lot of emotions to deal with and to process as a result of this terrible loss."
He added that the community needs to “mourn, to weep, to pray and to begin healing."
Hailey Salisbury, Dawn's daughter and the children's elder half-sister, told ABC 13 that she is "in total shock."
"I am so devastated,” she said.