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5 relatives dead in apparent murder-suicide, deputies say

VANCOUVER, Wash. — Deputies are investigating an apparent murder-suicide that left five family members dead Sunday in Washington state.

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The five were discovered after deputies responded Sunday afternoon to a request for a welfare check at a home in the Orchards neighborhood of Vancouver. The Clark County Sheriff’s Office said the request was made by another family member who said that a relative had texted them “stating they had harmed others at the residence.”

Deputies who went to check on the house got no response after they arrived. That, coupled with the possible involvement of a firearm and the initial information about someone harming others in the home, prompted authorities to call in the Southwest Washington Regional SWAT team to assist.

Deputies used a drone to look inside the house and found the victims, KIRO-TV reported.

Authorities did not immediately identify the people found Sunday or say where they were or who the perpetrator is believed to have been.

“While the investigation is in the early stage, this appears to be a murder-suicide involving a firearm,” deputies said Sunday in a statement. “Five family members at the residence appeared to have been shot, including the suspect.”

Authorities do not believe there is any threat to the public.