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THE VALLEY

Man Is Guilty of Killing His Daughter, Grandson

October 08, 2002|JEAN GUCCIONE | TIMES STAFF WRITER

In less than an hour Monday, a San Fernando jury convicted a 61-year-old man of two counts of first-degree murder in the fatal shootings of his 19-year-old daughter and 8-year-old grandson last year in his Sylmar home.

Claude Wright, an Air Force veteran, was also found guilty of twice discharging a firearm, causing death.

Wright is scheduled to be sentenced Oct. 28 by Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Warren G. Greene. Because Wright was found guilty of multiple murders, he faces an automatic sentence of life in prison without parole.

Authorities said Wright shot his grandson, Kyle, four times in the chest on July 12, 2001. He also fatally shot his daughter--Kyle's aunt--Elizabeth, who was home from college on summer break. He then shot himself but survived a bullet wound in the head.

During the trial, Deputy Dist. Atty. Carolyn McNary played a tape of a message that Wright left for his wife. "He said he was just tired of Kyle and Elizabeth and didn't want them in his house any longer," McNary said.

She also quoted Wright as saying: "I took them out and I'm going to take myself out too. I'll see you in hell."

In the hospital emergency room, Wright told the medical staff, including a radiologist, that he had killed his daughter and grandson, McNary said.

A patrol officer captured that conversation on a tape that also was played to jurors.

Authorities had placed Kyle in his grandparents' home after his mother, Wright's other daughter, Christa, was convicted of child abuse, McNary said.

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