Facebook status update alerts police of murder-suicide

Summary:A murder-suicide in Indiana was discovered after the killer posted on Facebook shortly before shooting himself. Police were directed to the scene by a Washington woman over 1,000 miles away.

Police were alerted of a murder-suicide in Indiana by Nancy Lopez, who saw a Facebook friend's status update saying he'd killed two people and himself because of a grudge. More than 1,000 miles away, the Washington woman could not believe the disturbing message from her 43-year-old friend Bart Heller.

The post read as follows: "someone call 911. three dead bodies at 3229 lima road fort wayne indiana. I've killed ryann, erin, and myself. people were warned not to f*cking play me and ruin me. they didn't listen. sorry about your luck."

She wasn't sure if the status update was a joke or not, but decided to call up the police department in Fort Wayne, Indiana, just in case. It was not a joke: after she told police what was going on and read them the post, they told her the address matched the one they had listed for Heller.

The status update was posted at 2:46 PM. Less than 20 minutes later, at 3:04 PM, officers were already on their way to the scene of the crime. They found three bodies inside the house: 19-year old Ryann Tipton, 19-year-old Erin Jehl, and Heller.

Police in Fort Wayne are investigating whether the breakup of Heller and his girlfriend Jehl was the motive behind the killings, according to CBS News. Authorities believe Jehl had brought along her high school friend Tipton to help her retrieve some of her belongings from her ex-boyfriend's house.

Heller was reportedly growing jealous of Jehl's friendship with Tipton. Police do not think Jehl and Tipton were romantically involved, so it's not known how big of a role their rapport played in the shooting.

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Topics: Social Enterprise

About

Emil is a freelance journalist writing for CNET and ZDNet. Over the years, he has covered the tech industry for multiple publications, including Ars Technica, Neowin, and TechSpot.

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