ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) — St. Paul Police are still trying to figure out the reason behind an apparent double murder-suicide.
Police found the bodies of a husband and wife and one of her relatives inside an apartment near Victoria Street North and Thomas Avenue Sunday evening. Four young children were also in the apartment, but none were injured.
St. Paul Police identified those killed as 31-year-old Chue Lor and his wife, 27-year-old Panhia Yang. The third victim, 18-year-old Kong Meng Lee, was Yang’s brother.
Investigators are not talking about the incident, but those who live in the building are.
“I kind of sensed something was wrong,” said David Givhan, a neighbor.
Givhan, who may have been the last person to see his neighbors alive, says he had walked into the apartment building when he saw his neighbor’s kid.
“An older lady was holding the child back, and the child was saying, ‘No, no daddy,’ and I just kind of minded my business and went on,” Givhan said.
He then jumped in the shower, he said. By the time he came out, his building was surrounded by police. The children, the ages of which range from 3 to 9, are with relatives.
Givhan said he did not hear any gunshots, or a struggle.
What he did see was officers putting the four children who live in the apartment into a police car.
Lor was the building’s caretaker, Givhan said. As for his wife, she was often gone and left her children with Lor.
According to police, there were no order of protections initiated by Panhia Yang, and there have been no calls of service to the address since 2011.
Whatever took place, it was enough to shake Laurel Hilden, who has lived in the building for 24 years.
“I don’t feel good about that it happened where I live,” he said.
He and Givhan both say this tragedy has made them want to move. They say the apartment complex is less of a home now that three people died here.
Neighbors say the couple kept to themselves and little was known about them.
Police continue to search for a motive behind this tragedy.