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What we know about murder-suicides in Mass. — and how to stop them

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image of police cruiser outside of home with the caption: The mansion at 8 Wilson's Way in Dover owned by the Kamal family. Three members of the Kamal family — mother, father and daughter — were found dead in December 2023 in a murder-suicide.

Mass Live, April 2024

A woman was shot and killed by her boyfriend in a Brockton home Tuesday morning, becoming the latest in a string of murder-suicides in Massachusetts that have received ample coverage over the past several years. In 2023 alone, at least five fathers and boyfriends in Andover, Dover, Raynham, Millis and Marlborough shot and killed their families or partners and then themselves. Already this year, Massachusetts has had at least three murder-suicides in addition to the Brockton case — in Springfield, Boston and Haverhill. Additionally, a Cape Cod native was killed along with her friend in a murder-suicide in Florida last month.

In addition to how frequently these cases seem to occur — though experts say they are not increasing in frequency — what is perhaps most striking about them is what they don’t have in common. They happened in both the richest and poorest communities in the state and involved families of many different backgrounds and races.

These dissimilarities underscore what experts say is a fundamental truth about murder-suicides: that they happen in every community and in every type of family. Because of this, experts are trying to get more resources available for would-be victims and abusers to prevent these violent acts from happening.

On Monday, Gov. Maura Healey said her administration wants to fund a wide range of programs that would help the mentally ill. This would impact a range of related issues, she said, but it’s unclear if this funding would include initiatives that address domestic violence — which experts say is the root of murder-suicides.

Read more at Mass Live.

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