HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) — Huntsville Police said Saturday’s shooting that left a man and a woman dead and another woman seriously injured appears to be a murder-suicide.
Officers also rescued two children from the home after a standoff that lasted several hours.
Huntsville investigators said it appears Brandon Lee Titsworth, 29, shot Ashley Leann Spangler then shot his live-in girlfriend, Briana Leigh Perkey. He then shot and killed himself.
Spangler, 24, died of her injuries. Perkey, 23, is listed in critical condition at Huntsville Hospital.
Neighbors tell WHNT News 19 that Titsworth and Perkey were in a relationship and lived in the Mountain Creek Drive home for more than a year. Police say there were a few domestic-related calls to this address in the past.
One neighbor said Perkey’s parents were in the Knox Creek subdivision Sunday morning looking for her pet pit bull which they said went missing during the standoff.
Another neighbor said the couple fought frequently and suspects drug use was involved.
Officers went to the home Saturday morning after a 911 call.
“We received a call this morning at about 7:40 a.m. from a subject within the residence that explained to us that a possible volatile situation may be unfolding,” Huntsville Police spokesperson Harry Hobbs said. When officers arrived, they found the home barricaded and Hobbs said officers knew there were at least two people inside. They did not know if there were others, or if there were any weapons involved.
They determined it was a domestic situation, and began to communicate with the suspect.
“We had some family members and friends that are trying to establish communications with the suspect through texting and telephone calls, as well as our negotiators are working that same area of communication with him,” Hobbs said.
Police blocked off several nearby roads and encouraged neighbors to leave the area, and Hobbs said he appreciated the community allowing police to cordon off the area.
One neighbor said police asked her to stay in her home, and she said she heard officers yelling “Brandon, come out.” She said police were patient as it went on for hours, but said she later heard two bangs or blasts. She said she did not know if they were gun shots.
Police were unable to convince the man to come outside, and SWAT entered at 12:25 p.m.
They found not two, but five people inside. Police said Titsworth man shot himself multiple times before officers entered the home. Spangler was dead from gunshot wounds and Perkey was seriously injured. There were also two children under the age of 12.
Hobbs said the SWAT team did not fire any rounds of ammunition.
A neighbor said she had not seen children at the home, but talked to one of the victim’s mother’s on Saturday. She said the woman asked police to retrieve a child’s car seat.
The investigation is ongoing.
UPDATE: WHNT News 19 has uncovered a lengthy history of run-ins with law enforcement for Brandon Titsworth, including a conviction of harassment charges. He’s also pleaded guilty to First Degree Theft and Third Degree Domestic Assault.
Huntsville Police still believe Titsworth to be responsible for shooting Spangler, Perkey, and himself.
Police say Perkey remains in critical condition.