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Teens Shot, One Killed
Wednesday authorities are calling a deadly mountain shooting a murder suicide and say the victims were two teenagers.“It is surprising, I can’t recall anything like this as long as I’ve been here,” said McDowell County Sheriff’s Department Captain Shanon Smith.
It happened in McDowell County, about 100 yards down a trail off of Roberta Road Tuesday evening at approximately 5 p.m., investigators say.
The victims were both young men, 16-year-old Abraham Valdez a junior at McDowell High School, and 18-year-old Daniel de Jesus Umana-Escobar, a senior before dropping out last week.
Investigators say when they arrived on the scene at approximately 5:30, they found a gun near Valdez, who’s now in critical condition at Mission Hospital with a gunshot wound to the head. Nearby, authorities say was Escobar – a friend – dead, shot in the torso.
The two were found by a neighbor joyriding in the area on an ATV when he came upon the scene. He drove down the slope and told a neighbor to call 911.
“Thought maybe he just wanted to chat or something but he had this strange look on his face,” said David Cain Twitty, who leaves near the abandoned water tower where the incident happened and was approached by his neighbor on the ATV. “He said ‘Man do you know there’s two dead people up at that water tower?’, and I was as shocked as he was.”
Authorities say no suicide note has been found but that, based on where the gun was found, the injuries and interviews with friends and family, it appears to have been a murder suicide.
By Megan Schiering
Follow Megan on Twitter @mschiering
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