A father wanted over the shooting murders of his two teenage children has also been found dead.
Police launched a massive manhunt for the man, aged in his 50s, after a boy, 15 and girl, 13, were found dead in their home in West Pennant Hills, north-west Sydney, reports Daily Mail.
Early on Friday morning the body of the double murder suspect was discovered in a home in Normanhurst, about six kilometres away.
The distraught mother, 36, was treated for shock when she arrived at the scene after police were called to the home at 5.20pm on Thursday.
The teenage children were shot dead in their bedrooms in what police described as a ‘horrific incident’.
‘It’s an absolutely horrific incident to unfold,’ Brett McFadden, acting regional commander of the north-west metropolitan region, said.
Officers said the shooting is being investigated as a domestic violence-related incident.
The mother arrived at her Hull Road home after emergency services responded to reports of gunfire about 5.20pm.
Inspector Kevin McSweeney from NSW Ambulance said when paramedics arrived on scene they were confronted with ‘an extremely distressing and stressful situation’.
‘We found two teenagers unfortunately deceased in their bedrooms and unfortunately at that time there was nothing we could do to help them,’ he said.
Superintendent McFadden said the attack was a ‘very harrowing experience for those initial responding emergency service providers’.
He said an investigation has now commenced into the deaths.
‘We consider this to be very much a targeted incident. We do believe it could well be domestic violence related and our focus at the moment is on the investigation to locate that person of interest,’ Supt McFadden said.
‘It is what can only be described as a tragic set of circumstances for the whole family.’
He added that support is being provided to family members.
“Planned and premeditated”
The body of John Ian Edwards, 68, was found dead in a Normanhurst house early on Friday morning, just five kilometres from where he shot dead his 15-year-old son and 13-year-old daughter in West Pennant Hills on Thursday evening.
The 68-year-old was confirmed as the father of the children but did not live at the West Pennant Hills home, police said.
Police Acting Region Commander Brett McFadden told reporters in Sydney on Friday that they had recovered the two powerful handguns Edwards used in the “premeditated” attack.
“The 68-year-old male was the holder of a number of firearms. The two handguns were registered in his name,” NSW Police Acting Region Commander Brett McFadden told reporters in Sydney on Friday.
“We understand that those handguns came into his possession lawfully earlier this year,” he said.
“The mother resided at the address at Pennant Hills with the two children. The 68-year-old did not reside at the house. He had to attend to commit the crime,” Det Supt McFadden said.
Acting Assistant Commissioner McFadden confirmed there were no current AVOs in place, but said there had been “some custody hearings over the past two years”.
“The nature of the relationship in recent times and level of access he had to the children … is subject to the investigation.”
Acting Assistant Commissioner McFadden added that information received in the past 15 hours led investigators to believe the shooting was “something that has been premeditated and planned”.
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