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Authorities believe a Tennessee mother and her 9-year-old son were brutally killed by a disgruntled former employee of their family business, before the man took his own life.
The Sumner County Sheriff's Office said Jessie Binkley and her son, Ezekiel “Zeke” Iacob, were found dead in their Bethpage home on Friday from apparent gunshot wounds, according to local station WTVF.
Authorities discovered evidence at the scene that they believe linked 41-year-old Kevin Marc Moore—a former employee of Binkley’s family business—to the crime.
After serving a warrant at Moore’s home, investigators found more evidence linking him to the shooting, but did not find Moore, who was then added to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation’s Most Wanted List.
Authorities were seeking Moore for two counts of first-degree murder, especially aggravated robbery, aggravated burglary and possession of a firearm during a dangerous felony.
Moore’s time on the Most Wanted List, however, would be short-lived. On Sunday around 11 a.m., the Sumner County Sheriff’s Office received a tip that Moore had returned to his Gallatin home, according to The Tennessean.
Sumner deputies and Gallatin Police arrived and surrounded the home, but Moore refused to come out.
“The tactical team served the search warrant, and upon entry, discovered Kevin Moore deceased from a self-inflicted gunshot wound,” authorities said in a statement.
Authorities were able to locate Moore’s identification and other property near the body.
Taylor Rowe, a friend of Binkley, told local station WTVF that Moore had been a one-time employee at the family’s business but had been fired.
“He’s a monster,” she said. “They were so goodhearted and he robbed them of that. I don’t understand any of it at all.”
Binkley’s older sister, Crystal Binkley Jones, described her sister to the outlet as a selfless, loving mother to 9-year-old Zeke. She described the mother-son duo as “two of the most amazing people you ever met.”
“He was goofy, silly, full of life,” she said. “Boy, did he love his momma. He was not afraid to tell ya or show it.”
In a statement to local station WZTV, the Sumner County Schools said they had counselors on hand at Jack Anderson Elementary School, where Zeke had been a fourth grader, to help those grieving from the sudden loss.
“Jack Anderson is an extremely close-knit school community and we know that they will come together to support each other during this terrible tragedy,” the statement said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with the Iacob family during this extremely difficult time.”
On Sunday night, the community gathered together for a vigil to remember Binkley and Zeke.
Many spoke of the family’s generosity. Rowe, who works with the nonprofit organization Live Love Nashville, told WZTV that Binkley and her husband had donated $15,000 this year to Christmas4Kids, sponsoring 100 children through the donation.
Those who gathered Sunday night said their focus is now on supporting Binkley’s husband.
“This is just a senseless act and it’s unacceptable and I’m glad he’s able to see how many people loved him and love his family,” friend Jessy Keith Whitely said. “We all support him, we have his back. That’s what I think is the most important thing here today.”
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