Saturday, June 15, 2013
"TOCCOA, GA — The couple discovered dead in their Toccoa apartment Tuesday afternoon were the victims of a murder/suicide.
"That's the ruling of the state medical examiner's office, Toccoa Police Chief Tim Jarrell said Wednesday evening.
"Jarrell identified the deceased as Ernest Farren Mitchell, 51, and Selena Dianne Mitchell, both of Toccoa. He said the two were husband and wife.
"`He shot her and then shot himself,` Jarrell said. `We are still investigating and attempting to find out why it happened.`
"Earlier in the day Wednesday, Jarrell had released more details about the investigation into the deaths.
"`We received a call at 12:12 p.m. Tuesday to Building 42, Apt. 102 at Andrews Court Apartments on Andrews Court,` Jarrell said. `We were called to come there for a welfare check. A family member had come by to check on the occupants of the residence and officers responded also.`
"Jarrell said officers checked around the outside of the apartment unit's perimeter. The apartments are located in a duplex unit near Toccoa Ford on Currahee Street.
"`The apartment was secure,` Jarrell said. `No one would answer the door when knocking the door. While looking in the window, they were able to see someone lying in the floor.`
"`We actually had to force our way into the apartment,` Jarrell said. `When the officers made entry into the apartment, there was a clear indication to the officers that these deaths were not of a natural cause.`
"Jarrell had said it appeared the incident was contained to the apartment.
"`I can tell you that we did not find any sign of forced entry into the residence,` Jarrell said."