An Illinois man allegedly killed his wife and then himself amid concerns that they had contracted coronavirus, the Chicago Tribune reports.
Authorities in Lockport Township, about 30 miles southwest of Chicago, discovered 54-year-old Patrick Jesernik and 59-year-old Cheryl Schriefer dead Thursday night.
Deputies from the Will County Sheriff’s Office found the couple with gunshot wounds to their heads in separate rooms. Two spent shell casings were recovered, along with three other rounds in a revolver near Jesernik’s body.
The deputies went to the home after a male asked for a welfare check on the couple; Jesernik’s parents had not heard from the couple recently and asked the male to check on them.
“All of the doors and windows of the residence were locked from the inside,” the sheriff’s office said in a press release. “There were no signs of a struggle, and the home was neat and orderly.”
There was no record of domestic disputes at the couple’s home, and both had “very limited police contact.”
Family members told investigators that Jesernik was concerned he and Schriefer had become infected with the coronavirus. Schriefer was tested a week earlier after she experienced difficulty breathing, but it was not clear whether she had received the results of the test.
Both tested negative for COVID-19 during an autopsy.
Police say Schriefer was shot in the back of the head at a close range, while Jesernik died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
As of Saturday, Coronavirus had infected upwards of 300,000 people and killed more than 8,000 in the United States. More than 10,000 cases and 243 deaths have been in Illinois alone.
The sheriff’s office said most of the calls coming in are about domestic disputes. Individuals can still obtain orders of protection at the local courthouse Monday through Saturday.
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