The Rancho Tehama Reserve, Calif., gunman who shot and killed four people during a shooting rampage in Northern California also killed his wife before hiding her body underneath their home, authorities said Wednesday.
“We were looking for his wife and couldn’t find her yesterday,” Tehama County Assistant Sheriff Phil Johnston said, according to the Los Angeles Times. “We located her dead body concealed under the floor of the residence last night. .… We believe that’s probably what started this whole event.”
It is believed that Kevin Neal killed his wife Monday. A hole had been cut into the floor before it was covered up.
The wife’s death brings the death toll from the rampage to a total of five, excluding the shooter, who was killed by police.
According to the Associated Press, investigators retrieved the body of the wife of Kevin Janson Neal hidden under the floor. Johnston said that authorities believe that her killing was the start of the gunman’s violent rampage that also left 10 people, including two children, wounded, across a crime scene that spanned multiple locations.
Neal’s violent criminal history also shines more disturbing light on the state of gun control in this country.
According to the report, the gunman was out on bail after being charged with stabbing a neighbor. Other neighbors had filed complaints about him firing hundreds of rounds from his house. The day before the shootings, he had been the subject of a domestic violence call.
Despite all of this information and these prior encounters, Neal had access to the semi-automatic rifle and the two handguns that he used Tuesday during his 45-minute attack.
It’s not yet clear what the terms of Neal’s bail were, and whether he would have been allowed to possess and fire the weapons on his property at the end of a dirt road in Rancho Tehama Reserve. Nor did sheriff’s officials give details on the domestic violence call.