TAVARES, Fla. – Three people were found dead at a Tavares home Thursday in what police are calling a double murder and suicide.
All three people found at the home on Lake Crest Drive were known to each other, according to police.
Tavares police Lt. Sarah Coursey said officers responded around 9:15 a.m. following a Leesburg Police Department request to locate someone after they failed to show up to work.
“When the first unit arrived on scene, some of the neighbors asked if they were here in reference to gunshots they heard around 2:51 in the morning, 2:57 in the morning, around that time,” Coursey said.
Neighbors told police they heard five or six gunshots in the morning but no one called 911. Coursey said normally the community is good about calling right away but she thinks residents may have thought it was fireworks.
“This neighborhood is a sleepy neighborhood. Nothing like this ever happens here so that would be the last thing they think would happen in this neighborhood,” she said.
When officers went into the home, they found three people dead inside, two men and one female.
The victims later identified as James Delgiorno, 41, and Wendy Higgins, 39. Officer believe they were shot while they were sleeping by Joseph Mcguirl, 47.
“This is an isolated incident, it’s senseless, it’s sad, it’s a tragedy, but no danger to the community,” Coursey said.
Investigators said the three people worked together and the home where they were found was owned by Delgiorno.
“We ask that you give the families respect and privacy during this difficult time,” Tavares police said in a tweet. “We will update when we are able.”