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Posted at: 08/18/2010 6:00 PM | Updated at: 08/19/2010 1:33 PM
Superior Police confirmed Thursday the identities of the victims in an apparent homicide-suicide.
Superior Police Chief Floyd Peters identified the individuals as 23-year old Superior native Matthew Magdzas, his wife April J. Oles-Magdzas and their one-year-old daughter Lila. April’s family members say she was eight-and-a-half months pregnant. Police also reported they found three dogs in the home that were also fatally shot.
Based on evidence gathered so far, police believe the crime was likely committed by Matthew Magdzas Tuesday afternoon. Police said their bodies were discovered Wednesday by April’s mother. She called police to report the incident at around 12:36 p.m. Wednesday saying she believed that “he killed them all.”
Police say shortly after the call officers arrived on the scene. They said all three victims were beyond the help of medical attention. A handgun was found at the house and police suspect it was the murder weapon.
Police say family members last spoke with the Magdzas’ around 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday. Matthew is a member of the Wisconsin National Guard. He last served with the 121st Field Artillery Battalion to the Operation Iraqi Freedom Theater of Operations from 2006-2007. He had been on non-drilling status for the last year.
Eyewitness News spoke with Magdzas’s grandmother who said after Matthew returned from the Middle East he wasn’t the same person. “He told my other grandson in a letter, ‘Don’t ever do this. It’s not what you think it is,'” she said. “Shooting a person is nothing like shooting a deer.” Matthew’s grandmother said her grandson was always kind and loving to both April and his daughter. She also said that recently Matthew had been going through a rough time. She said just a few weeks prior to the incident Matthew’s doctor put him on anti-depressants.
Police say they made no prior calls to the Magdzas residence for any type of domestic incident or disturbance. Additionally, Matthew has no adult arrests with the Superior Police.
Magdzas’s family has no immediate plans for a funeral service but say they are meeting with their priests today to help cope with the loss of their loved ones.