Dad in Salem murder-suicide shot self

Dad in Salem murder-suicide shot self

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by KGW Staff

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kgw.com

Posted on May 22, 2012 at 8:05 AM

Updated Wednesday, Oct 30 at 8:04 AM

SALEM -- The man suspected of killing his wife and three young children Tuesday has been identified as Nikolay Lazukin.

"Lazukin died as a result of what is consistent with a self inflicted gunshot wound to the head," said Lt. Dave Okada with the Salem Police Department.

The other victims were identified earlier as 26-year old Natalya Lazukin, 3-year old Angelica Lazukin, and 1-year-old Zoe Lazukin, who all died as a result of gunshot wounds and Sefi Lazukin, an infant, who died of probable asphyxiation, according to medical examiners.

Nikolay's body was found in a vehicle in Cottage Grove about 60 miles away from where the other bodies were found, in the Lazukin family home.

Police were investigating the case as a likely murder-suicide.

They were an "absolutely wonderful family" with a close group of friends and strong relationships with extended family in Salem, said Peter Ignatovich, the Slavic Christian Church administrator who said he knew them well. They were at church most Sundays, he said.

He was skeptical the incident was a murder-suicide, noting that the police have not said conclusively that the father killed his family or himself.

"It was really disturbing to watch the news portray this monstrous kind of event," Ignatovich said. "I would not see him do it in any way. He loved his kids, loved his wife."

Authorities have not said if a weapon was discovered in the house they believe was intentionally set on fire.

Firefighters carried the four bodies out of the burning home in the 2500 block of Fisher Road around 5:30 a.m. Tuesday morning.

The husband is a "person of interest" in the murders, Okada said. His body was found around 11 a.m., inside a vehicle in Cottage Grove, about 60 miles away.

"At this time investigators believe this to be a domestic related murder-suicide situation," Okada said.

They said the dead woman's husband was also the father of the slain children.

"It was just really surreal what was going on down there.  I basically witnessed people screaming and saying that there were people in the house and I just feel bad for the family,” said neighbor Dan Grove.

Nearby, a delivery driver on Tuesday discovered the body 21-year old Devan Matlock along the road about 4:20 a.m. near the intersection of Fisher and Devonshire Streets.

"Devin was everyone's friend," said Colleen Matlock, Devin's mother.  "It's not fair."

"It's hard," added sister Amanda.  "Whoever did this needs to pay for it."

That case "may be connected," State Medical Examiner Larry Lewman said Wednesday.

More: Man found dead along road in Salem

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