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Indiana man finds parents, 2 friends shot to death in home

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Updated: May 13, 2013 1:25AM



WAYNESVILLE, Ind. — Authorities said Sunday that four people found shot to death in a southern Indiana home were a couple who lived there and two of their male friends.

Daniel Burton, the 27-year-old son of the woman who was killed, arrived home from work Saturday night and found two of the victims dead in the living room of his Waynesville home, Bartholomew County Sheriff Mark Gorbett said. He said Burton called police, who found the other two victims, including Burton’s 53-year-old mother, Katheryn Burton.

“We still have crime scene techs and criminal investigators at the scene and anticipate them being there for quite a length of time,” Gorbett said. “We are following up on all leads at this point and we have no one in custody at this time.”

Authorities identified the others who were killed as Katheryn Burton’s longtime boyfriend, 39-year-old Thomas Smith, who also lived at the home, and two 41-year-old Columbus men, Aaron Cross and Shawn Burton. The coroner said the Columbus men were friends of the couple, but were not related to them. Waynesville is a few miles south of Columbus.

Gorbett said the three men were found dead in the living room and that Katheryn Burton was found dead in a bedroom.

When asked by reporters for additional information on Sunday, Gorbett said, “Quadruple homicide.”

The Rev. Gary Carroll, pastor at Waynesville Chapel Mercy Missionary Baptist Church about a half-block from the home, told The (Columbus, Ind.) Republic that he had no indication there had been trouble at the home until he saw the flashing lights Saturday night.

Carroll, who lives next door to the church, said he knew the residents of the home only in passing — enough to wave when he saw them. He said they seemed like nice people.

Beverly Nichols told the newspaper she mowed the grass for a friend directly across the street from home on Saturday afternoon and didn’t notice anything out of the ordinary.



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