Just after dark Sunday in Texas, a family of four on vacation from Baytown arrived at their resort hotel near the Gulf of Mexico for a one night stay. The Galveston island where the resort is located in is a favorite for Houston-area families and a common retreat for locals.
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<span style="margin-top:15px;rgba(42,51,6,0.7);font-size:12px;">Credit: Tarick Foteh / Www.tfoteh.com, Landry's</span>
The San Luis Resort describes itself as "the perfect Galveston hotel and resort experience with lavish accommodations, breathtaking Gulf views, and personalized service." Less than 10 hours after checking in to the relaxing beach resort, a scene of unimaginable violence unfolded.
Police say a 37-year-old woman fatally shot her husband and two sons, age 5 and 10, as they lay in the bed in their room. The woman then turned the gun on herself and fired a round into her head before falling to the ground.
Officers responded to a report of "pops" coming from the eighth-floor hotel room and reported hearing "faint moaning coming from inside". The door to the room was locked from the inside, but open gaining entry the police found four shooting victims.
The father and youngest child were pronounced dead at the scene while the woman and her 10-year-old son were transported to UTMB Health John Sealy Hospital where they died the following day.
Investigators are unsure of what prompted the violence and stated that it appeared to be a murder-suicide. The family died from four shots fired from a 9mm handgun.
Capt. Joshua Schirard, a spokesman for the Galveston Police Department, said in a statement, "It's definitely not one of those things we experience here in Galveston very often."
A Goose Creek ISD spokeswoman, Beth Dombrowa, also released a statement saying, "The tragic circumstances surrounding these students' deaths are almost too much to bear. "
Dombrowa continued, "A student death can have a ripple effect on a school community and, because of this and out of concern for the students' classmates and the campus faculty, we will have additional counseling services at the school."
"We are grieving for the loss of young life and its infinite possibilities and we pray for the family, friends, and students most affected by this tragedy."
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