St Louis Murder Suicide Leaves Four Dead

murder

KMOX is reporting that police found four people dead in St. Louis this afternoon.  It was an apparent murder-suicide, although it wasn’t immediately  clear which of the deceased was the shooter.

Police responded about 1:40, and went to the scene at the Cherokee Street Building.  In one of the businesses, they found two adult males, and two adult females shot to death.

Cherokee Street was immediately shut down, but re-opened a short time later when police were certain that there was no active shooter.

A witness said two women came running out of the building to call the police.

St. Louis Police Capt. Michael Sack held a press conference and told reporters the place of business was a home-health care facility.  Three of the deceased worked there.  He said witnesses observed the fourth person, one of the males, get into an argument with the employees.  He then pulled out a semi-automatic handgun, which was found at the scene, and began shooting.

All of the victims were in their 40’s and 50’s.

 

According to the psychiatrist Karl A. Menninger, murder and suicide are interchangeable acts.  If an individual is prone to suicide, and does not take his own life first, he may take the life of another before completing the act.  He says Freudian logic claims severe repression of natural instincts due to early childhood abuse, may lead the death instinct to emerge in a twisted form.

In 1990, Milton Rosenbaum discovered murder-suicide offenders to be vastly different from perpetrators of homicide alone.  Murder-suicides were overwhelmingly committed by severely depressed men.  Other murders do not usually involve extreme depression, and include a number of females.  Of murders in the United States, the greatest number involves men murdering women with guns.  About one-third of ‘partner murders’ result in suicide by the perpetrator.

Although law enforcement agencies do not keep statistics of murder-suicide, the medical community says the yearly range is between 1,000, and 1,500.  The vast majority of those occur between spouses or intimate partners.  More than 90 percent of murder-suicides involve the use of a handgun.

There are several different forms of murder-suicide.

Suicide to facilitate murder, as in suicide bombing

Murder which entails suicide, such as driving a car with one or more passenger off a bridge

Suicide after murder to escape punishment

Suicide after murder as a form of self-punishment due to guilt

Joint suicide in the form of killing the other with consent, and then killing oneself

Murder before suicide with the intent of preventing future pain and suffering of family members, such as a father killing his children before ending his own life.

Murder to prevent an individual from causing harm to others, leading to suicide.

 

The reason for this particular murder-suicide remains unknown.  But the killer apparently anticipated an act that would leave a total of four dead.

James Turnage

The Guardian Express

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