Police are investigating the deaths of an elementary school teacher and his son as a murder-suicide after the pair were discovered with gunshot wounds inside the bedroom of their burning home which was up for sale in Tennessee.
A home inspector who was visiting the Maryville condominium in the early morning on June 10 saw smoke and called 911, The Associated Press reported.
Firefighters arrived and extinguished the fire, and authorities removed James “Jimmy” Reagan, 38, and his son Clark Reagan, 8, from the home. James was rushed to Blount Memorial Hospital where he died shortly after.
Clark was taken to UT Medical Center where he passed away around noon.
Maryville Police Chief Tony Crisp said that a handgun had been found at the home, according to AP.
According to the New York Post, Maryville Police Chief Tony Crisp confirmed that the deaths appeared to be a murder-suicide, as both of the victims had sustained gunshot wounds.
Additionally, a handgun was recovered in the bedroom where the father and son were found. Authorities now await the autopsy to confirm the cause of death.
“As released by our police department earlier this afternoon, a Maryville father and son passed this morning in a terrible tragedy,” a statement from Maryville School issued on Monday afternoon read.
“Words cannot express our overwhelming sense of devastation and grief. We know the media will have many questions, so we are confirming that the two involved were, in fact, a teacher and a student in the Maryville school district.
“Our hearts are also broken for our colleague, friend, and the loving mother of this young victim.”
Authorities say the parents, James and Miranda Reagan, had recently separated. James Reagan was a teacher for first graders at the school which Clark also attended. Clark had just finished third grade.
“I guess we’re all feeling kind of helpless,” neighbor Jolly Shelton told WBIR.com. “What can we do? You know if only we could’ve done something before.”
In a neighborhood that she says is friendly and makes every effort to reach out to others, Shelton said she and her fellow neighbors have been left heartbroken and stunned by the tragedy.
“I mean, the poor mother, and for their family… what a tragic, tragic loss,” she said.
Mother, Daughter Die in Suspected Murder-Suicide
A woman and a 2-year-old child died in Australia after plummeting to their deaths from a cliffside lookout platform last month.
The woman was identified as Tanja Ludwig, 33; a German national living in Wollongong, according to 7News.
Emergency crews worked to recover the bodies from difficult terrain in bushland at the bottom of a cliff on May 21, 7News reported.
A worried citizen contacted the police around 2 p.m. local time to express concern about the welfare of the woman and 2-year-old girl at a popular tourist spot near Wollongong, about 40 miles south of Sydney.
When crews arrived, they found the bodies of the woman and child—believed to be mother and daughter—at the bottom of the cliff.
According to 7News, police are investigating the incident as a possible murder-suicide.
Superintendent Craner told 7News the recovery operations were hindered by the difficult terrain.
Epoch Times reporter Tom Ozimek contributed to this report.