North Carolina family visited sheriff’s office before murder-suicide left 4 dead
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A North Carolina family of four visited the Davie County Sheriff’s Office before the father allegedly committed a murder-suicide that left his girlfriend, two children and himself dead, according to local reports.
Investigators believe Aschod Ewing-Meeks, 26, fatally shot his girlfriend, Ashton Brown, 26; their 4-year-old child, Bella; and their 8-month-old infant, Brixx, before setting their house ablaze and fatally shooting himself on April 18, according to FOX 8 Greensboro.
“I’ve seen a lot in 30 years,” Davie County Sheriff JD Hartman during a Wednesday press conference, but this was “close to one of the worst if not the worst” cases he had ever witnessed, FOX 8 reported.
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Hartman said the family had visited the sheriff’s office before the tragedy occurred. The sheriff’s office later released video footage showing the two parents and their children entering the office lobby and speaking to a receptionist just after 12 p.m. Monday.
They apparently asked to speak with a deputy but were vague as to why, FOX 8 reported.
The receptionist then asked the couple for their address, and they shared Ashton Brown’s parents’ address. The receptionist also gave them a phone number to call before they left the office.
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Brown later called 911 and told a Davie County telecommunications respondent that her family had safety concerns but did not specify what kind of safety concerns. A deputy then called Brown, at which point she turned the phone over to Ewing-Meeks. The phone call between the deputy and Brown’s boyfriend only lasted 30 seconds, Hartman told reporters, according to FOX 8.
The deputy and Meeks then had several short phone calls over the course of 30 minutes.
At one point, Meeks said he thought he was being followed but would not give police his location, nor would he return to the sheriff’s office.
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Around 2 p.m., a witness saw the family arrive home and go inside. Less than 15 minutes later, another witness saw smoke coming from the house and drove to the fire department to report a fire. Firefighters arrived minutes later and discovered the family’s bodies inside the house. All four individuals had been shot, and Meeks was holding a gun.
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline can be reached by calling 800-273-8255. For those who don’t want to speak to a counselor, there’s also a national Crisis Text Line available 24/7 by texting “home” to 741741.