A man went on a shooting rampage in Tennessee that left six dead, including his estranged wife, an adult daughter, and three children, before he killed himself in an incendiary end to his domestic violence troubles.
Gary Barnett, 48, shot and killed his estranged wife Regina Barnett, adult daughter Brittany Perez, and the unidentified children on Thursday night.
They were found dead Thursday night at a home near Chatanooga where police responded to a shooting and found the residence ablaze.
It was unclear whether the children were shot or killed in the fire, Marion County Sheriff Bo Burnette told ABC Chattanooga, Tennessee affiliate News Channel 9.
Marion County Sheriff Bo Burnette said the murder-suicide stemmed from a domestic situation and was among the most gruesome scenes he’s seen in his career.
“This is one of the worst things I’ve seen,” he told the station. “You hear about these things, but this is one of the worst I’ve been involved in all my career as a law enforcement officer.”
Once firefighters extinguished the flames, authorities found the remains of three adults and three children inside the home.
Another unidentified adult who suffered gunshot wounds in the incident survived and was hospitalized, authorities said. Details about the victim were available. The remains of the six people killed in the incident were taken to Nashville for autopsies, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said.
A neighbor said the couple fought, and Burnette said officers had been to the location for domestic calls in the past.
“They were always going to tit for tat, back and forth,” Noah Simmons told News Channel 9.
The couple had been in the middle of a divorce. Regina Barnett had warned a court that her estranged husband would shoot her. She got a no-contact order against him, after his December arrest on a domestic assault charge, according to the station.
In an affidavit of complaint, she wrote, “My soon to be (e)x husband threatened to shoot me and he verbally abuses everyday. He also threatened to shoot my dog. He also has anywhere from 50 to 60 guns in his room. I am afraid he will get drunk and shoot me.”
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