Police conclude father shot family, then killed himself

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, June 17, 2003

MEADVILLE &045; Investigators have decided that a 44-year-old county employee shot his wife and two stepdaughters before killing himself in a triple murder and suicide on June 1, Franklin County Sheriff James Newman said Saturday.

&uot;Our investigation has concluded that Ronnie Brown was the shooter,&uot; said Newman.

Deputies answering an 8:10 p.m. disturbance call found Brown along with his wife, Gloria West Brown, 38, and her two daughters, Abree’l N. West, 15, and Shenill E. West, 12, in the master bedroom of their mobile home on Kerben Lane.

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All had suffered gunshot wounds to the head.

Three of the victims were pronounced dead at the scene.

Abree’l was transported to University Medical Center in Jackson, where she died the following day.

Franklin County Coroner Percy Peeler said based on the amount of evidence at the crime scene autopsies were not ordered in the deaths.

A small-caliber handgun believed to belong to Brown was found at the crime scene.

Newman previously said his department was investigating an allegation that Brown had attempted to sexually assault Abree’l during the incident, but he offered no new details on Saturday.

&uot;The end result is that they are all dead.

It’s just a terrible tragedy,&uot; said Newman.

The killings caused an out-pouring of grief in this small community, where some 600 people attended funeral services for Gloria, Abree’l and Shenill last week at Franklin County High School.