A family from upscale Orange County in California considered the “perfect” Christian family was found dead in their home on Tuesday. The family of four was killed in their $650,000 home in a bloody murder-suicide. Police say the oldest child of Mark and Lydia Sheer, 21-year-old Michael, shot his parents and his younger sister before turning the gun on himself.
Deputies responded on Monday to reports of a man yelling and possible gunfire in the area. Law enforcement explored the area but was not able to find anything to validate the report. One neighbor, Anila Whitney-Miller, said she thought she heard a young girl crying inside the home early Tuesday morning. She described the crying as awful and very hard; Anila said all of a sudden it just stopped. It was not until the police received a request to check on the residents of the home that this horrible discovery was found.
Once police gained entrance into the home they found four bodies which were later identified as the Sheer family, a “perfect” Christian family. All covered in blood were the remains of 55-year-old Mark, 54-year-old Lydia, 15-year-old Amy and the one believed responsible Michael. Lt. Jeff Hallock of the Orange County Sheriff’s Department said they are still investigating what triggered the deadly massacre inside the two-story home, but all leads point to Michael as the shooter.
Michael was living in the home with his parents at the time of the murders. He had no prior criminal records, only three speeding tickets. His friends and neighbors knew him as an avid University of Southern California sports fan.
During earlier years Michael attended Saddleback Valley Christian High School and was a member of the football team. One friend who played football with him, Evan Myers, said Michael had trouble making friends. Evan said he believes he was Michael’s only friend, “He was always friendly to me and I reciprocated” said Evan.
The Sheers were longstanding members who were active and regularly attended Mount of Olives Lutheran Church. The senior pastor of the church, John Steward, was notified of the deaths on Tuesday. Kelley Crimins, spokesperson for the church, said they are all devastated about this tragedy. She continued,
“The Sheer family were part of the ‘our’ family here and we are asking everyone to pray for their extended families and friends. Our primary concern is for the welfare of our congregation, and particularly our teens and young adults, who knew the Sheer children. We are responding to this tragedy by offering grief and prayer support to anyone who calls the church office at 949-837-7467. Our weekend services have been modified this week and will focus on dealing with tragedies and getting through difficult times.”
Mark worked as a tactical business coach. He gave seminars and acted as a mentor to start-up businesses. One man who identified himself as a business partner and longtime friend of Mark called the killings surreal. He said Mark was a family man with great kids, a teenage daughter and an adult son. He was a bible study teacher at his church; they were the “perfect” Christian family.
The Sheer family was found dead inside of their home located at 25601 Pacific Hills Drive in Orange County. Neighbors called the family very friendly and a model of the “perfect” Christian family. Law enforcement said they had all been victims of gunshot wounds in what appeared to be a murder-suicide with all leads pointing to Mark, their son, as the killer.
By: Cherese Jackson (Virginia)