A 68-year-old woman from Bella Vista, California allegedly fatally shot her husband, son, daughter-in-law — even the family’s three dogs — before setting the home on fire and shooting herself. The tragic deaths happened earlier this month.
According to Shasta County Sheriff’s Sgt. Brian Jackson, Teresa Mae Wilson allegedly murdered her husband Gary Lynn Wilson, 69; son Ellis Leroy Wilson II, 44; and daughter-in-law, Zoe Lynn Wilson, before killing the dogs and then turning the gun on herself.
Police don’t know the exact motive behind the tremendous loss of life. However, an investigation has shown that there was "long-term tension" at the home.
"Due to the tension, it is believed Teresa may have reacted and committed the acts," Jackson stated in a press release.
Police found a burnt .380-caliber semi-automatic gun "known to belong to Teresa" in her lap after they responded to the fire. An autopsy revealed that she was still alive when the fire started and that she died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. In addition to the two dogs that Teresa allegedly shot to death, two cats also died in the tragedy. The felines died from smoke inhalation in the blaze that police believe to be arson-induced.
According to Knox News, it is not clear how long the victims were dead before the fire began.
Teresa reportedly worked at Sears. Her surviving child, a daughter named Ronnie Krug, has stated on Facebook that she is missing her family. She has also posted that she wants people to remember both her parents as loving. She called her mom a “caring parent.”
“She was my best friend for years,” the grieving daughter wrote. “I would always talk to her about everything. She was a great listener. [...] I don't know what I would have done without her.”