HASBROUCK HEIGHTS, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Three people in their 80s were found dead in two homes on a street in Hasbrouck Heights after a man shot his wife, brother-in-law and himself early Wednesday, authorities said.
Angelo Talignani walked a couple of doors down to his brother-in-law’s home on Burr Place around 7:30 a.m. Once there, he took two guns legally owned by his brother-in-law, Anthony Gentile, and shot Gentile in his bedroom, Bergen County Prosecutor John Molinelli said.
Talignani then went back home and shot his wife, Antoinette, while she was lying in bed, officials said. Talignani then shot and killed himself.
A home health aide, who had recently moved in with the Talignanis, heard the shots and called police from a neighbor’s home.
“She was sitting on the stoop I guess in shock. She said that he came in, the wife said, ‘Angelo, where were you?’ Something like that and she heard pop, pop, pop. She ran out,” neighbor Julius Binetti said.
Molinelli said police found Gentile’s body when they went to question him about the guns found at the Talignanis’ home.
“What happened there to cause him to kill his brother-in-law, we do not know,” Molinelli said. “It could have been an argument, it could have been Mr. Gentile from preventing his brother-in-law from getting his guns.”
Although the motive is unclear, investigators said Talignani had issues with depression, CBS 2’s Christine Sloan reported.
Neighbors also say they knew the shooter had suffered from depression but never imagined he would kill others and himself.
“It’s a tragedy; these people were all elderly who had known each other for a long time,” Molinelli said. “These were longtime residents of Hasbrouck Heights, good families. You really never know why people do this.”
Neighbors were stunned.
“I am thinking, did he have a gun with him, could he have taken out any of us?” Binetti said.
“It’s surreal,” a man told WCBS 880’s Levon Putney. “I don’t believe this happened.”
“It’s really shocking and sad,” a woman told 1010 WINS’ Rebecca Granet.
Both Gentile, who was also know as Tony, and Talignani were Korean War veterans, Sloan reported.
“They belonged to the DAV, disabled vets. Tony Gentile was a sergeant in arms. He was a good member, good soldier. He was in heavy combat,” Salvatore Altomare said.
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