A 15-year-old Texan teenager shot dead his entire family, posted photos of the bodies online, and then committed suicide after police found him, officials said Thursday.
The teenager has been identified as William Quince Colburn III, officials from Aransas Pass Police and the San Patricio County Sheriff’s Office said. After killing his sister and parents, the teenager posted graphic images of their corpses on social media and threatened to continue violence at a school.
Police found the teenager on Wednesday evening at an RV park in Aransas County, south Texas, after being alerted to the footage on social media. They asked him to get out of his camper van but he refused. They then heard a gunshot, police said.
“The entry was made in the camper van and immediately discovered the graphic scene shared on social media,” the Aransas Pass Police Department said in a statement. “The young man was also found dead from a gunshot wound. In total, investigators found 4 dead bodies and 2 dead dogs. “
Oscar Rivera, the San Patricio County Sheriff, said the three people were also shot dead. The deceased has been identified as the teenager’s father, William Colburn Jr, mother Jana Colburn and sister Emma Colburn, 13.
Police said they “could very well have worked on an even more tragic event later this morning” had they not been alerted by social media users to the teenager’s threat.
Mahria Batts, who has identified herself as the teenager’s sister and the oldest of 11 Colburn children, is raising money for the funerals of her deceased family members.
“We are deeply saddened by the events that have unfolded today. Like many in the community, we are hurt, outraged, sad and above all, [there is] a feeling of emptiness, ”she said The independent. “We should be celebrating our mother’s 53rd birthday today. Instead, we have to run and try to figure out how we’re going to rest them all. “
Ms Batts added: “While we appreciate and understand so many emotions shared with us, on behalf of all my brothers and sisters, I ask you to take into consideration that even with the way this has all unfolded , we still cry 4 people. We ask you to find in your heart to donate, to share and also to understand that we are in mourning. “
She said her brother received a call from an Aransas Pass judge who told them about the triple murder and suicide.
If you experience feelings of distress and isolation, or if you have difficulty coping, The Samaritans offer support; you can talk to someone for free over the phone, with confidence, 116 123 (UK & ROI), email [email protected], or visit the Samaritans website to find details of your nearest branch. If you are based in the United States and you or someone you know needs mental health assistance right now, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800- 273-TALK (8255). The Helpline is a free and confidential emergency line accessible to everyone 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you are in another country, you can go to www.befrienders.org to find telephone support near you.