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Seattle pair charged with murder in family shootings

December 29, 2007|From the Associated Press

SEATTLE — A woman and her boyfriend were each charged Friday with six counts of aggravated first-degree murder in the Christmas Eve shootings of her parents and her brother, his wife and their two young children.

Michele K. Anderson and Joseph Thomas McEnroe, both 29, confessed to detectives they had shot six members of Anderson's family, according to court documents.

Anderson said that both of them shot her parents, brother and sister-in-law and that McEnroe killed the children, according to a separate affidavit.

King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg, who will decide whether to seek the death penalty, said the motive for the slayings may never be known.

"Given the magnitude of this crime, I pledge to give this case serious consideration for the state's ultimate penalty," Satterberg said.

The aggravated circumstances underlying the charges include the fact that there were multiple victims and allegations that two killings -- the shootings of the children, ages 3 and 6 -- were done to conceal a crime or the perpetrators' identity.

Conviction on aggravated first-degree murder in Washington is punishable only by death or by life in prison without parole.

Anderson and McEnroe were ordered held without bail after an initial court hearing Thursday.

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