ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. — In 48 hours, the St. Louis County Police Department handled two probable murder-suicide investigations just miles apart.
The first one happened on Sunday morning in north St. Louis County.
According to a press release from the St. Louis County Police Department, a man and a woman were found dead inside an apartment on the 5300 block of Gladstone Place at about 9 a.m. Sunday.
Officers were conducting a welfare check at the home when they found the man and woman. According to the release, both were suffering from gunshot wounds and were pronounced dead at the scene of the shooting.
The victim was identified as 21-year-old Latonya Brown and the suspect was identified as 23-year-old Justin Taylor. Both lived in the 5300 block of Gladstone Place.
Police believe the man shot the woman and then turned the gun on himself.
A spokesperson with the department said Brown and Taylor were involved in a romantic relationship at some point.
Brown's twin sister told 5 On Your Side Latonya leaves behind a three-year-old.
"We need her story out! She was innocent," she said.
The very next day on Monday afternoon there was another probable murder-suicide in north St. Louis County.
The St. Louis County Police Department's North County Precinct responded to a welfare check shortly before 4 p.m. Monday in the 2700 block of Rottingdean Drive.
Responding officers found two victims, a man and a woman, suffering from gunshot wounds inside the residence. Both were pronounced dead at the scene, according to police.
Investigators said they believe the man shot the woman, then turned the gun on himself.
Tuesday afternoon, the victims were identified as 60-year-old Cheryl Washington and 61-year-old Dana Haney.
The investigation is ongoing.
Anyone with additional information is asked to call the St. Louis County Police Department at 636-529-8210 or leave an anonymous tip with CrimeStoppers at 866-371-8477.
Below are the calls for service for domestic-related incidents in the last two years:
- 2022: total - 10,463 (3,422 Year to date)
- 2023: 3,299
These are the total homicides related to domestic violence:
- 2021: 10
- 2022: 7
- 2023: 4
The police department's social media post said, "When people are in abusive or violent relationships and situations, our Department can help."
It shared these resources:
- The St. Louis County Police Department Domestic Violence Unit and Victim's Advocate can help victims find housing, counseling and even help with orders of protection. If you or someone you know is a domestic violence and abuse victim, please don't hesitate to reach out to us at 314-615-8665.
- Safe Connections: 314-531-2003 (24-hour hotline and texline) - Crisis line advocates can assist callers with safety planning and provide referrals for shelter, legal, counseling, and other area resources.
- Crime Victim Center: 314-652-3623 (Helpline) Provides advocacy, legal, and counseling resources. The advocacy programs provide crisis intervention, case management, education about the criminal and civil justice system, and referrals.
- Legal Helpline: 314-664-6699
- St. Martha's Shelter: 314-533-1313 (24/7 Crisis Line) and it has a drop-center at 4733 Mattis Road St. Louis, MO 63128 with walk-in hours from Monday to Friday 10 a.m.-4 p.m. with no appointment necessary - it offers legal advocacy, safety planning, crisis intervention, housing assistance and referrals.
A spokesperson also shared some more resources on its website here.