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Man kills four kids and himself in Murder Suicide, Merced
KSEE-NBC ^ | March 26, 2002 | KSEE-NBC

Posted on 03/26/2002 1:02:59 PM PST by FresnoDA

Man kills four kids and himself in Merced murder-suicide
Four Merced children are dead after what police believe was a murder suicide. Just after 7 a.m. Tuesday, a man went to the home of his ex-wife at Lecco and Piedmont Streets in Northeast Merced, where he allegedly shot his own child, three other children in the home and himself. Merced County Sheriff's Deputies say the man's ex-wife, Christine McFadden, came back from a morning walk to find her ex-husband and her five-year-old daughter lying dead on the floor. McFadden went to a neighbor's house to call police, then returned home to find her three other children dead in other bedrooms. Authorities say the dead include the five-year-old girl, a 17-year-old girl, and 14- and 15-year-old boys. Those three teenagers were not children of the man who apparently committed the murders. Police say the man had been living in Kern County. How, why and when he arrived in Merced are unanswered questions at this time.



TOPICS: Breaking News; Crime/Corruption; US: California
KEYWORDS: lawenforcement; murdersuicide
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1 posted on 03/26/2002 1:02:59 PM PST by FresnoDA
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To: FresnoDA
Postpartum depression.
2 posted on 03/26/2002 1:03:37 PM PST by Oldeconomybuyer
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To: golitely;spectre;Amore;Travis McGee;BunnySlippers;Doughtyone;Hillary's Lovely Legs;Snow Bunny...
Retired sheriff's deputy kills four children, himself in Merced

By KIM BACA Associated Press Writer

MERCED, Calif. (AP) - A retired sheriff's deputy shot to death his 5-year-old daughter and his three teen-age stepchildren before killing himself Tuesday in an affluent suburb of Merced while his estranged wife was on a morning walk, investigators said.

Merced County Sheriff's Sgt. Tom Cavallero said Christine McFadden was returning from her morning walk shortly after 7 a.m. when she found her 17-year-old daughter lying dead in the hallway near the door of her bedroom.

McFadden, a veterinarian in Merced, then called police from a neighbor's house before returning with deputies to the gray ranch-style home to find her three other children and her estranged husband lying in separate bedrooms, Cavallero said.

"It looks like they had been sleeping," Cavallero said of the children.

The body of former Santa Clara County sheriff's deputy John Hogan was found in the bed of the master bedroom, holding the dead 5-year-old girl, Michelle Hogan, in his arms.

Melanie Willis, 17, and Stanley Willis, 15, were students at Golden Valley High School. Stuart Willis, 14, was an eighth grader at Our Lady of Mercy School.

Commander Bart Pazin of the Merced County Sheriff's Department said Hogan was a retired deputy from Santa Clara County.

Cavallero said McFadden left the house with a neighbor at 6 a.m. for their morning run and that she told deputies her estranged husband was not in the house when she left.

"I don't think anybody can pre-plan for this type of action," Pazin said. "Nobody could ever foresee something like this."

The shooting took place in the Robinson Estates, a small community on the east side of Merced near Bear Creek, where lawns are well manicured on half-acre lots.

"It is a very affluent residential area with custom homes," Cavallero said. "It is very nice, with single-family homes on big lots. It is very suburban."

3 posted on 03/26/2002 1:05:53 PM PST by FresnoDA
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To: FresnoDA
Absolutely horrible. They should allow the men in the community to bludgeon the bastard's corpse and toss it in a field for the birds and rats to devour the remains.
4 posted on 03/26/2002 1:08:55 PM PST by Diddle E. Squat
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To: FresnoDA
What th f*** is wrong with some people?!?!?!
5 posted on 03/26/2002 1:09:18 PM PST by oldvike
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To: FresnoDA
>"I don't think anybody can pre-plan for this type of action," Pazin said. "Nobody could ever foresee something like this."

This seems to be happening about once a week.

Why the hell can't somebody foresee something like this?

When a husband and wife are separating, anybody who suspects their spouse might be capable of violence needs to protect themselves and the kids at a safe location, and the state MUST NOT require that spouse to make their location known... (There must be other things that people can come up with, but this would be a start...)

Mark W.

6 posted on 03/26/2002 1:13:26 PM PST by MarkWar
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To: FresnoDA
BANG BANG BANG BANG BANG!!!!!
7 posted on 03/26/2002 1:17:59 PM PST by Vladiator
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To: MarkWar
Unfortunately it is extremely difficult for a divorced spouse to keep their ex from locating them, irregardless of where and how they move. Too many legal requirements that a smarmy lawyer can use to track them down, ways you might not even think of intuitively.

About the best preventative measure is to be very careful who you get involved with and marry. And even then, that isn't foolproof.

8 posted on 03/26/2002 1:18:30 PM PST by Diddle E. Squat
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To: Diddle E. Squat
Why limit it to the men?
9 posted on 03/26/2002 1:18:39 PM PST by Vladiator
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To: FresnoDA
home of his ex-wife

Affects of social and moral breakdown, but hey, "it's constitutional."

10 posted on 03/26/2002 1:18:46 PM PST by concerned about politics
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To: Diddle E. Squat
Why these people can't just shoot themselves FIRST? So much senseless murdering...
11 posted on 03/26/2002 1:19:51 PM PST by princess leah
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To: FresnoDA
The X woman didn't do enough,she could have prevented this!ISN'T THIS WHAT WE HEARD IN THE YATES CASE WHEN THE FEMINAZIS WANTED TO BLAME THE MAN?I just bet you won't hear that in this situation!
12 posted on 03/26/2002 1:20:05 PM PST by INSENSITIVE GUY
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To: FresnoDA
This breaks my heart.

Wonder why he spared his wife?

sw

13 posted on 03/26/2002 1:22:03 PM PST by spectre
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To: FresnoDA
>Man kills four kids and himself in Merced murder-suicide

This just occurred to me as I was putting my my post...

These stories seem to be popping up here on FR a lot lately. This topic is the theme of the
new Jennifer Lopez movie -- ENOUGH -- Self Defense Isn't Murder

Is some Freeper a publicity flak for Sony, and do these stories get put up to get the room humming harder prior to the new release?

Mark W.

14 posted on 03/26/2002 1:22:14 PM PST by MarkWar
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To: INSENSITIVE GUY
Good point, time to ping the Yates fanatics.
15 posted on 03/26/2002 1:23:30 PM PST by Diddle E. Squat
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To: Diddle E. Squat
My boss' sister was killed by her ex-husband about 2 years ago. She had gotten a restraining order against him, but he merely found her at work, walked in the front door, shot her in the head then blew his own head off. I guess if somebody is willing to kill themselves in order to kill you there's really nothing you can do about it (other than arming yourself, which is a good idea).
16 posted on 03/26/2002 1:24:13 PM PST by oldvike
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To: spectre
Because that was the cruelest thing he could do to her. She has now had everything taken from her. Horrible, horrible. God bless the poor woman.
17 posted on 03/26/2002 1:24:33 PM PST by Diddle E. Squat
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To: MarkWar
Mark, have you been over to the Drudge Report lately? His site is filled with stuff I wouldn't buy the Enquirer to read....go figure.

sw

18 posted on 03/26/2002 1:25:23 PM PST by spectre
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Comment #19 Removed by Moderator

To: FresnoDA
I've been trying to keep up with the weird deaths that are going on in that area. Something very strange is happening there. Isn't there a big drug culture there or some kind of brainwashing experiments going on? Remember the nut that attacked some kids in their home with a pitchfork a few years ago. I think it happened in that area.
20 posted on 03/26/2002 1:26:10 PM PST by tippytoes
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To: oldvike
Unfortunately, so many women daily live with the fear in the back of their mind that he could appear out of nowhere to kill or maime them. Its a horrid existance.
21 posted on 03/26/2002 1:26:19 PM PST by Diddle E. Squat
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To: Diddle E. Squat
You are probably correct. She will most likely go insane...I would.

sw

22 posted on 03/26/2002 1:27:13 PM PST by spectre
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To: spectre
He didn't "spare" his wife - he punished her by killing all the kids. That's what the man in BC did a couple of weeks ago, too. Set the house on fire with all the kids inside and held his estranged wife back from rescuing them while she lost her 6 children and everything she owned in an arson inferno.
23 posted on 03/26/2002 1:28:02 PM PST by ValerieUSA
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To: one_particular_harbour
"It's a pathological thing"...

Oh...I hate it when that happens.

sw

24 posted on 03/26/2002 1:28:52 PM PST by spectre
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To: Diddle E. Squat
We've probably all known men that terrorize their ex-wives/girlfriends. They're the same guys that would confront a complete stranger in public if they thought that stranger was "lookin' at their woman". These guys usually have the IQ of a toad and looks to match. They make me sick.
25 posted on 03/26/2002 1:30:20 PM PST by oldvike
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Yeah, I'm sure NOW, Rosie, and Katie Couric will come out with statements of support and say they know how he felt!
26 posted on 03/26/2002 1:31:51 PM PST by drew
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To: Oldeconomybuyer
Postpartum depression.

Post depart 'em depression...are we now going to blame the ex-wife ala Russell Yates? If not, why not?

27 posted on 03/26/2002 1:34:07 PM PST by Wil H
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To: spectre
Wonder why he spared his wife?

My bet is that he didn't kill his ex wife because he wanted her to feel the lifelong pain about having all of her children murdered.

28 posted on 03/26/2002 1:34:22 PM PST by Hillary's Lovely Legs
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To: oldvike
The only possible solution I could see(and it would only help in some cases) is changing the law to equate repeated threats the same as completed actions. Not for a single threat(many people say things in heated arguments or under the influence that they later regret), but perhaps repeated death threats should be prosecuted as attempted murder or worse.

Frankly I've never completely understood why shooting at someone and missing results in a lesser charge than actually hitting them. The intent to murder(or at least aim in that direction and risk murder) is clearly evident, yet its not a matter of reading someone's mind(unlike hate crimes) since the action of pointing, aiming, and pulling the trigger revealed intent.

29 posted on 03/26/2002 1:34:54 PM PST by Diddle E. Squat
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To: Diddle E. Squat
Unfortunately, so many women daily live with the fear in the back of their mind that he could appear out of nowhere to kill or maime them. Its a horrid existance.

I feel sorry for her, but especially the kids, but darn it, some ex-wives are visious wolves capable of putting any man over the edge.
I'm not saying she was, but I've workd with women who's pastime is looking for ways to torturer their ex, using the kids as tools.
Divorce is a horrable war sometimes.
I'm female, but sometimes the guy is the nicest person you want to meet, but gets stabbed in the heart so many times, he just can't take it anymore, and has a total breakdown.
There's always two sides to a story.

30 posted on 03/26/2002 1:34:56 PM PST by concerned about politics
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To: FresnoDA
MERCED, Calif. (AP) - A retired sheriff's deputy shot to death

Giving lie to the premise that only police, or former police, should have firearms.

31 posted on 03/26/2002 1:35:23 PM PST by Lazamataz
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To: spectre
"Wonder why he spared his wife?"

I could only guess. Maybe to make her suffer for the rest of her life?

I just lost my job today. My wife stays home and raises our 2 year old and 5 month old. However, reading this story puts my troubles in perspective. Also, I could never think about harming my wife and kids, which would include keeping myself alive for as long as possible.

32 posted on 03/26/2002 1:36:34 PM PST by lormand
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To: Diddle E. Squat
Unfortunately, so many women daily live with the fear in the back of their mind that he could appear out of nowhere to kill or maime them.

I'm not defending the guy, but a plausible explanation could be that the ole lady was squeezing him for every nickle the guy had. As I understand it, the woman lived in an affluent neighborhood, and he was a retired sheriff's deputy. With the help of our wonderful family court, this guy was probably paying his entire income to her for alimony and child support. Who knows, maybe she even turned the kids against him.

He was probably looking at another 13+ years (one kid was only 5) of forking all his money over to her, so she could live like a queen. Being already retired, that was pretty near the rest of his life. So rather than live the rest of your life in financial ruin, I can understand the guy wanting to off himself. However, killing your own kid is insane.

33 posted on 03/26/2002 1:40:50 PM PST by Go Gordon
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To: Diddle E. Squat
Unfortunately, so many women daily live with the fear in the back of their mind that he could appear out of nowhere to kill or maime them. Its a horrid existance.

Men too. My ex is/was a nut. I used to have secretary on notice to advise me if my ex came to the office, I had an escape plan worked out.

34 posted on 03/26/2002 1:44:22 PM PST by VRWC_minion
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To: lormand
I AM so sorry you lost your job today. Went over to your homepage, and you look the picture of someone who could easily get another job. I wish I were in Austin and could hire you, whatever you do....I'm praying you will find another job when I get done with this post.

Be well....sw

35 posted on 03/26/2002 1:45:26 PM PST by spectre
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To: Go Gordon
Even if she was a watch (which I doubt) he married her - he asked her out, dated her, married her, made a baby with her. That was his own judgement that got him into this pickle. Nobody forced him.
36 posted on 03/26/2002 1:46:39 PM PST by ValerieUSA
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To: lormand
www.brilliantpeople.com
37 posted on 03/26/2002 1:48:38 PM PST by GuillermoX
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To: lormand
Sorry to hear of your job loss. Its no fun, but you can get through it. Hang in there and good luck.
38 posted on 03/26/2002 1:49:57 PM PST by Diddle E. Squat
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To: concerned about politics
Killing defenseless kids is definitely beyond the pale. I agree that there are two sides to these horrendous endings that stem from a brutal divorce. We can only hope that men and women in similiar circumstances (perhaps contemplating the unthinkable) will stop the pettiness, bickering, and pure hatred towards each other in order to save their children... mentally,physically and spiritually.
39 posted on 03/26/2002 1:52:11 PM PST by american spirit
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To: Diddle E. Squat
Absolutely horrible. They should allow the men in the community to bludgeon the bastard's corpse and toss it in a field for the birds and rats to devour the remains.

Just when you think it can't get any worse, along comes someone like you with an idea like this and proposes to make other uninvolved people as mentally ill as the perpetrator.

Absolutely horrible.

40 posted on 03/26/2002 1:52:46 PM PST by Protagoras
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To: ValerieUSA
oops - watch=witch
41 posted on 03/26/2002 1:53:15 PM PST by ValerieUSA
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To: oldvike
A lot of these guys wouldn't think of attacking a man in a bar fight but they can sure go home and beat the hell out of their wives. Totally disgusting not to mention cowardly.
42 posted on 03/26/2002 1:55:47 PM PST by BnBlFlag
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To: VRWC_minion
An article in today's Austin American-Statesman reports on a local divorcee who tried to hire a hit man to kill her ex-husband. The few details about the woman indicated that she was somewhat of a nut case--50 dogs in the house at one time or another--and of 4 kids, the ex had sole custody of the two youngest. So it is not always men who are the perps.
43 posted on 03/26/2002 1:59:42 PM PST by RightWingConspirator
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To: Diddle E. Squat
Sounds like you want to legislate morality?
44 posted on 03/26/2002 2:09:17 PM PST by purereason
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To: BnBlFlag
I think you're right.
45 posted on 03/26/2002 2:09:40 PM PST by oldvike
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To: ValerieUSA
OH PLEASE!! Let's not get into that "he just made a bad choice" mentality again. Give it up! If we could all see into the future and know BEYOND A SHADOW OF A DOUBT that the person we're contemplating marrying, would never do anything bad, hurtful, wrong or whatever, we'd probably never marry. You get no such guarantees in life.

This woman, however, has children with different last names, and she has a last name different from any of the kids. My bet is that she is a narcissistic, man-user, NOW member, who marries them, has kids with them, decides she's "not happy" in the marriage (and of course it MUST be all his fault!), divorces him, soaks him for everything she can get, talks him down to his children, then remarries and starts the whole agenda over again.

I'd guess that the guy felt so helpless, so used, missed his daughter so badly, and could find no way out of the legal morasse his ex has put him in. It happens over and over in this country. Until our government learns to look at each incident fairly, and starts requiring some guidelines for these women, not just the men, and stops using our children as pawns, and begins to look at men as valued individuals, entitled to a life as well, and not just as sugardaddies for all these self-absorbed women, we are going to continue to see this kind of tragedy. Men may not suffer from post-partum depression, but they sure as heck suffer from post-divorce depression; and so do the people in their lives who love them.

So stop the crap of whining for the poor woman. Hurt for the lost children, definitely, but understand that often times it's the man who is the initial victim. And our society, and government, are condoning it.

46 posted on 03/26/2002 2:12:03 PM PST by pillars
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To: pillars
here, here !
(or hear, hear ??)


47 posted on 03/26/2002 2:15:23 PM PST by tomkat
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To: concerned about politics
No, no, I knew Dr. McFadden, she was my friend and vet the four years I lived in Merced, many years ago. She was a wonderful friend, a devoted mother, and kind and empathic vet....my God. She certainly didnt drive this guy nuts...no..no..Pray for her, all of you. God, her suffering is unimaginable.
48 posted on 03/26/2002 2:16:22 PM PST by quitwhining
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To: quitwhining
if that's true,
my humble retraction is offered in this instance.
49 posted on 03/26/2002 2:18:19 PM PST by tomkat
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To: FresnoDA
This poor woman! Vets are usually very good people; she must be devastated to say the least. Prayers for her.
50 posted on 03/26/2002 2:24:12 PM PST by PoisedWoman
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