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3 Dead in Apparent Murder-Suicide

Relatives cite marital problems after a man and two daughters are found in his Palmdale home.

April 20, 2004|Karima A. Haynes | Times Staff Writer

A 40-year-old man apparently shot his two daughters in his Palmdale home early Monday before taking his own life, authorities said.

Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies responded to a 4 a.m. call of gunshots in the 37300 block of Segovia Way, an upscale neighborhood on the city's east side, authorities said.

A woman came out of the single-family house and told deputies that she believed her husband and two children had been shot inside, authorities said. Deputies entered the house and discovered the victims' bodies in an upstairs bedroom.

Authorities believe the father shot his daughters before fatally wounding himself. All three had been shot in the upper body.

Officials did not release the victims' identities or the name of the woman who summoned authorities.

However, relatives identified the victims as Robert Bennett and his daughters, Heather, 15, and Kristin, 8. The woman was identified as Rina Bennett, the girls' mother and Robert Bennett's wife.

Authorities did not provide details about a possible motive for the slaying, however family members indicated that the couple had been experiencing marital problems.

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