Professional wrestler Chris Benoit apparently murdered his wife and son before killing himself.
Detective Bo Turner told WAGA-TV the case was being treated as a murder-suicide, but said that couldn’t be confirmed until evidence was examined by a crime lab. The station said investigators believe the 40-year-old Benoit killed his wife, Nancy, and 7-year-old son, Daniel, over the weekend, then himself on Monday. The bodies were found in three rooms.
World Wrestling Entertainment said on its Web site that it asked authorities to check on Benoit and his family after being alerted by friends who received “several curious text messages sent by Benoit early Sunday morning.”
Lead investigator Lt. Tommy Pope of the Fayette County Sheriff’s Department told The Associated Press the deaths were being investigated as homicides, and that autopsies were to be performed Tuesday. Pope said the bodies were discovered about 2:30 p.m., but refused to release details.
The house is in a secluded neighborhood set back about 60 yards off a gravel road, surrounded by stacked stone wall and a double-iron gate. On Monday night, the house was dark except for a few outside lights. There was a police car in front, along with two uniformed officers.
Benoit was a former world heavyweight and Intercontinental champion. He also held several tag-team titles during his career.
UPDATE: The story keeps getting worse.
Pro wrestler Chris Benoit strangled his wife and smothered his son before hanging himself in his weight room, a law enforcement official close to the investigation told The Associated Press on Tuesday.
Authorities also said they are investigating whether steroids may have been a factor in the deaths of Benoit, his wife and their 7-year-old son. Steroid abuse has been linked to depression, paranoia, and aggressive behavior or angry outbursts known as “roid rage.”
“We don’t know yet. That’s one of the things we’ll be looking at,” said Fayette County District Attorney Scott Ballard. He said test results may not be back for weeks.
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