Investigators couldn't explain Tuesday why a 20-year-old man fatally shot his parents and sister in rural northwest Allen County before killing himself.
An elderly family member hid in a bathroom Monday night then escaped, according to the Allen County Sheriff's Department.
Officers found the deceased family members at 7118 W. Cook Road, a home between U.S. 33 and O'Day Road with a wreath on its door and a Christmas tree in the window.
Dispatchers received a call just before 9 p.m. Monday about gunfire inside the home.
“It's never easy to go to a scene like this or deal with something like this, but we're here to investigate what happened and to support the family,” Cpl. Adam Griffith of the Allen County Sheriff's Department said Monday.
The woman who escaped called police. She and the four who were killed lived in the home. Authorities also received another call from a person elsewhere, Troy Hershberger, chief deputy of the Allen County Sheriff's Department, said during a news conference Tuesday.
Investigators believe Samuel Mason Long shot and killed his parents, Mark A. Long, 50, and Lisa Renee Long, 45, and sister, Mahala Long, 15, before killing himself. He died from a gunshot wound to the head and his death was ruled a suicide, the Allen County coroner said.
Mark, Lisa and Mahala Long all died from multiple gunshot wounds. Their deaths were ruled homicides, bringing Allen County's homicide total to 41 for this year.
Investigators didn't know why the shootings occurred, Hershberger said.
This is the second incident in Allen County this year involving the deaths of four family members.
On June 2, Cohen Bennett Hancz-Barron, 21, was charged with four counts of murder in the deaths of a woman and her three children in a home in the 2900 block of Gay Street, near McKee and East Pontiac streets.
Hancz-Barron is expected to stand trial May 17 in Allen Superior Court. Prosecutors have asked that he be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole if convicted.
Recent area mass killings
Nov. 29: Four people were found dead in a home at 7118 W. Cook Road. Police believe Samuel Mason Long, 20, fatally shot his parents, Mark A. Long, 50, and Lisa Renee Long, 45, and sister, Mahala Long, 15, before killing himself.
June 2: Sarah Zent, 26, and her three children – Carter Mathew Zent, 5; Ashton Duwayne Zent, 3; and Aubree Christine Zent, 2 – were slain in a home in the 2900 block of Gay Street, near McKee Street. Cohen Bennett Hancz-Barron is charged with four counts of murder and is set to stand trial beginning May 17. Prosecutors have asked that he be sentenced to life in prison without parole if convicted.
Nov. 22, 2018: Three people were killed, and two were badly injured Thanksgiving night at 6116 Downington Drive. Colton D. Messmer, 20, Joevonn M. Johnson, 23, and Tracey A. Andrews, 21, were all shot to death. Kameron Joyner, then 23, was sentenced to 200 years after pleading guilty to three counts of murder and two counts of attempted murder. Gerald Pinkston, 21 at the time, was sentenced to 166 years after he was found guilty of three counts of murder and one count of criminal recklessness committed with a deadly weapon.
June 28, 2018: Three men were shot to death near Harrison and Fourth streets. Dernail Ivory Brown, 26, was found lying on the ground at Harrison and Fourth. He had been shot to death. Police later learned a vehicle had struck a parked car at Fourth Street west of Wells Street and the crash was linked to the shooting. Inside the vehicle, Deshaun Devon Richards, 25, and Breondon Devon Pinkston, 28, were found suffering from gunshot wounds. Both died. No arrests have been made in the slayings.
Jan. 20, 2018: Two women and the unborn child of one of the women were killed in a shooting inside a home in the 1200 block of Lillie Street. Preonda Jones, 37, Brianna Gould, 24, and Gould's unborn son, Legend, died. Deyante Stephens, then 26, was found guilty of three counts of murder and a sentencing enhancement for using a gun. He was sentenced to 200 years.
Sept. 13, 2016: Three men were shot to death at the former Sports & Spirits bar, 1723 E. Wayne St. No one has been charged in the shootings, which took the lives of Nicholas Lee Powers, 30, Demario Laquan Burnett, 21, and Jerry Trivon Coleman, 31.
Sept. 11, 2016: Three people and an unborn child were killed inside a home at 3006 Holton Ave. Another person was badly injured. Traeven Harris and Dajahiona Arrington, both 18, were shot to death and Consuela Arrington, 37, was fatally shot and stabbed. Dajahiona Arrington's unborn son also died. Marcus Dansby, the father of the child, pleaded guilty but mentally ill to four counts of murder, one count of attempted murder and a sentencing enhancement for using a gun to commit the crime. He and was sentenced to 300 years in prison.
Feb. 24, 2016: Three men were shot to death in a home at 808 E. Lewis St. Adam Mekki, 20, Muhannad Tairab, 17, and Mohamedtaha Omar, 23, were all shot several times in the head. Artavius Richards, who was 19 at the time, was convicted of three counts of murder and sentenced to 190 years in prison. Darrell McDaniel, who was also 19 at the time, pleaded guilty to robbery and was sentenced to 20 years.
– Journal Gazette