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A St. Louis woman and her two daughters were fatally shot by her ex-boyfriend, who fled on a Greyhound bus and was captured 100 miles away, police said.
Ronald Marr, 34, was arrested in Effingham, Illinois, hours after the early Thursday triple slaying of the 30-year-old woman and her 7- and 1-year-old daughters in St. Louis, police said.
Cops responded to the woman’s St. Louis home and found all three dead from gunshot wounds. Police Chief John Hayden told reporters investigators found a “very gruesome scene” inside.
“There’s a lot of disturbing evidence inside,” Hayden said. “It’s traumatizing to the officers that went in.”
The victims have not been identified by police, but relatives told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that Marr was the former boyfriend of 30-year-old Kanisha Hemphill, who died in the attack. The woman’s daughters, 7-year-old Journee, and 1-year-old Ja’Kari, were also killed, relatives told the newspaper.
Court records cited by the outlet show that police said a witness heard the gunfire and spotted Marr running away. The witness later picked Hemphill’s ex out of a photo lineup, police said.
Marr allegedly tossed his cellphone following the triple slaying and bought another before getting onto a Greyhound bus and fleeing, police said. A motive for the slayings was not yet provided by investigators, according to the report.
Hemphill’s brother, Jermaine Walker, said his sister and Marr had ongoing domestic issues.
“I didn’t really care for him,” Walker told the Post-Dispatch. “They had a few instances and I always told my sister, leave the guy alone. But she ended up having a baby by him.”
Other relatives are in shock following the killings, Walker said.
“The death penalty would be too easy for him,” he continued. “He should have ate a bullet right after that.”
Police said Marr also lived in St. Louis, but charging documents cited by the Post-Dispatch list him as resident of Bellefontaine Neighbors, Missouri.
Marr remained in custody Friday at the Effingham County Jail, where he’ll be held awaiting extradition back to St. Louis, police said.
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