A man is in police custody for allegedly committing a series of violent crimes in a Missouri town late Friday night into Saturday morning.
The suspect, identified as 46-year-old Richard Emery, is accused of killing his girlfriend, her two young children and her mother in the couple’s St. Charles home, St. Charles Prosecuting Attorney Tim Lohmar said in a news conference on Saturday. Police identified her as Emery’s girlfriend, Kate Kasten, Lohmar said.
It is unclear at this time if Emery has legal representation.
Officers arrived at the home after receiving reports of an active shooter and pulled over a man, later identified as Emery, who was leaving in a white Chevy Silverado. Lohmar said the suspect refused to leave the vehicle, fired at the officers and ran away on foot.
Another set of police officers responded to the scene of the shooting inside the home. They found a woman in critical condition in the master bedroom upstairs, who later died of gunshot wounds.
Downstairs, officers found Kate Kasten’s two children, 8 and 10 years old, and her 61-year-old mother shot to death.
Soon after, police said they received a report that someone had repeatedly stabbed another woman about a quarter mile away and had attempted to steal her car. The description of the man matched officers’ description of Emery.
Emery was arrested after police found him in a gas station bathroom bleeding from wounds they believe he sustained in a shootout with police earlier.
Lohmar said a potential motive is unclear and the investigation is still ongoing.
Emery has been charged on 15 counts, including first-degree murder, assault and attempted robbery.
Lohmar said each of the charges filed carries a penalty of 30 years to life in prison. He also suggested that the death penalty could be a possibility.
“We’re not going to make any pronouncement about that right now, but I can tell you this thing looks and smells like a death penalty case,” he said.
Close friends, family and members of the community will gather in t. Charles for a vigil honoring the four victims, according to CNN affiliate KMOV.