In closing their case on a shocking triple shooting, police said that a woman and her parents all died last month as part of a suicide pact. First, Deborah A. Daub, 59, fatally shot her husband James A. Daub, 62, in the back of the head near their porch, according to the West Manchester Township Police Department in Pennsylvania. Then their daughter Morgan E. Daub, 26, shot Deborah in the back of the head too. Finally, Morgan died by suicide by shooting herself in the back of the head, investigators said.
Officers ruled out anyone else being involved. Police claimed to find multiple written letters in which the daughter and parents discussed their plans. There was no sign of forced entry, officers said.
The coroner examined the bodies and determined that each had suffered a gunshot wound to the back of the head. The coroner’s office determined that autopsies would not be performed as the manner of death appeared to be consistent with the already available evidence.
The county forensic unit also processed the interior of the home. It should be noted that no signs of forced entry were found. There also were no signs of a struggle or indications of anyone other than the victims being present during their deaths. The positioning of the bodies, pistols, and shell casings, as well as the presence of the hearing protection, support the account put forward by the written documents left behind by the family.
Last month, police said they were dispatched on Jan. 25. at approximately 11:15 a.m. and found the family dead. A neighbor had heard three shots just before midnight on Jan. 24. There were 10 to 15 seconds between shots. The first two were muffled and the third was clearer.
According to police, Deborah left behind a letter speaking of her and her daughter deciding together to die by suicide. It was dated Jan. 19, but it referenced a similar letter written about nine months before.
“She also speaks about the evil that has mounted against Morgan and the family but does not detail to what she is referring,” police wrote in a press release. “The rest of the letter seems to be directed to or about God and to her husband, James Daub. The letter reads as if she expects James to survive them after their passing.”
The daughter chose the date, the mother said. This was in apparent reference to a biblical passage.
“Samuel 1:24-28 Morgan chose the date!” Deborah allegedly wrote in other documents. “I believe I have to be with her!”
Police said Morgan left behind written documents too.
“There was an extensive list or checklist, consisting of multiple pages, which appears to contain preparatory steps before ending her life,” police wrote. “These listed steps included speak to dad, clipping the dog’s nails, letters to family, etc.”
At some point, James joined the pact. According to police, he wrote in an undated document that he was crushed when his daughter told “us” that she must die by suicide.
“The letter indicates that that he is aware that both Morgan and Deborah can’t go on and wish to end their lives,” police said. “In the early parts of the letter James says that he is not ready to end his life but by the end of the letter it is evident that he had then decided to do so.”
Both parents signed separate suicide letters, cops said. James said he killed himself by his own free will. They only had two guns and he was “shaky,” so Deborah pulled the trigger for him, he wrote, he wrote, according to cops.
Deborah said she took her life by her own free will.
“I was too shaky, so my daughter pulled the trigger for me,” she wrote, according to police.
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