In what was apparently a domestic dispute that became a massacre, a Houston-area man is now in custody after allegedly killing six people, including four children, on Wednesday night. The man, later identified by CNN as Ron Lee Haskell, surrendered after a standoff against police. He'll be officially charged on Thursday.
Harris County Sheriff's Deputy Thomas Gilliland told the Associated Press that the dead included a 4-year-old boy, two girls aged 7 and 9, and a 14-year-old boy. The two adults killed were a 39-year-old man and a 33-year-old woman. Although Gilliland originally identified Haskell as the father of all four children, he later corrected his account to the Associated Press. The dead are the gunman's sister and brother-in-law, along with four of their children. Haskell is estranged from his wife, who lives in another state. According to the AP's updated account, Haskell disguised himself as a FedEx delivery man in order to gain entry into the home. Haskell then asked the children, at home, where his estranged wife was. Their parents came home later, at which point the gunman opened fire.
The only surviving member of the shooting — the gunman's 15-year-old niece — identified the shooter to police, and told them where he was headed next, according to Gilliland. The deputy told the AP that the girl called 911, and alerted officials that the shooter planned on killing her grandparents. "Fortunately, they were brought out of the house before that could happen," Gilliland told CNN. She remains in critical condition at a Houston-area hospital. According to court documents introduced at a hearing on Thursday, the 15-year-old girl tried to shut the door to her home on Haskell, but he kicked it in.