Original article no longer available
By Hans Moran, Staff Writer
Wednesday, February 19, 1997
Ann Tracy, Ph.D., Executive Director of the International Coalition for Drug Awareness, confirmed that the woman perpetrator in this case was in recent antidepressant withdrawal.
Holladay mother and daughter shot to death in apparent murder-suicide. Police are still searching for a motive in a murder-suicide Tuesday afternoon that left a mother and daughter dead inside a quiet apartment complex. The trouble became evident at 3:41 p.m. when Charli Seiter, 54, called 911 saying she had “shot her mother and now she was going to shoot herself” as she put the phone down.
Three minutes later, Salt Lake County deputy sheriffs found Marjorie Larson, 77, and Seiter, also known as Charlene, dead in their first-story apartment living room at 1039 E. 4700 South.
“We’re pretty confident that this is a murder-suicide,” Sft. Jim Potter said. “The daughter shot her mother and then she went ahead to shoot herself. The big thing that we don’t have right now is the why.” Investigators spent Tuesday night sorting through the apartment in search of evidence that might help them identify a motive. No one witnessed the shootings.
The victims had shared the apartment for some time, but there wasn’t any indication of prior domestic problems, Potter said. Some of the victims’ neighbors gathered at the scene while the investigation was conducted Upon arriving, Potter said, officers found the front door ajar with pieces of mail strewn about near Larson’s body. Shortly before she was shot, the mother had gone to retrieve her mail in the front office.
They were the last ones to see the mother alive,” he said. There was no evidence of a struggle or a fight. A handgun was also found in the living room, Potter said. Both victims were shot once in the chest.
The sheriff’s office investigates only a few murder-suicides every year, Porter said. But this case is unusual because there is no obvious reason for the shootings.
“There’s no record of any problem with these individuals or the apartment,” he said. “And there’s no history of domestic disputes at the address. That, we’re sure of.” The incident left Seiter’s three adult children shocked and wondering why.
“We had no idea this was going to happen,” Scott Seiter told the Salt Lake Tribune. “I can’t believe it.” Charli Seiter had worked at the newspaper as a librarian and secretary before suffering a stroke and being placed on long-term disability leave in 1996.