Published On: Tue, Jan 10th, 2017

South Carolina community mourning murder suicide of family killed by Jorge Chavez

Lexington County in South Carolina is still reeling from the shocking murder suicide of a family, which included the deaths of two children, 4-year-old Elijah Chavez and 1-year-old Ezra Chavez.

Authorities in South Carolina say  the four people were found dead in a home on New Year’s Day around 8 p.m. and Lexington County Coroner Margaret Fisher said in a news release that the dead included Marissa Hope Reynoso, 26, and the two Chavez kids.

Jorge Luis Chavez, 25, was revealed to be the killer, initially reported as missing, before news landed that he was the killer.

Fisher confirmed that an older child of Reynoso wasn’t at the home at the time and is safe. The coroner confirmed all four died of gunshot wounds. At one point the area around Old Barnwell road has been closed for the police to conduct their investigation.

Lexington County Sheriff Jay Koon said that Chavez shot his way into the house in the Three Fountains community and shot Reynoso and their two children with a 9mm handgun before shooting himself. The gun was reported stolen in Clinton years ago, Koon said.

But it’s unclear when and how Chavez got the weapon, the sheriff said.

Reynoso called for help, saying a man she described as her boyfriend was breaking into her home, according to a 911 recording released Tuesday.

“My boyfriend is trying to break into my house right now,” she told the dispatcher in a controlled voice shortly after 8 p.m.. “He is like busting through the window. I need an officer here like right now.”

Prior to this shooting incident, Reynoso called Lexington County law enforcement twice during the previous six weeks when Chavez showed up at her home uninvited, according to incident reports.

Reynoso told deputies on Nov. 14 that Chavez was in her driveway and told her, “I can’t do this anymore. I’ll see you in heaven,” according to the incident report.

Chavez then showed Reynoso a rope that he had on the front passenger seat.

Deputies were called again to the home for a domestic incident Dec. 12, according to reports. Reynoso told officers she and Chavez had broken up about two months earlier. She said they had recently “started hanging out to allow the children to see their father.”

“Marissa stated that Jorge showed up unannounced tonight and knocked on her bedroom window and asked her to come outside to speak about their relationship,” the report states. “Marissa stated that Jorge said he would not leave but then did so when she called 911.”

Reynoso told deputies she and Chavez were together for five years.

“Chavez tried to enter the home Sunday night through a window and eventually shot his way into a back door as Marissa called 911 to report a burglary in progress,” Koon said. “Deputies arrived at the incident within one minute and immediately began to pursue leads.”

Photo/CRIME SCENE DO NOT CROSS / @CSI?cafe via wikimedia commons

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About the Author

- Roxanne "Butter" Bracco began with the Dispatch as Pittsburgh Correspondent, but will be providing reports and insights from Washington DC, Maryland and the surrounding region. Contact Roxie aka "Butter" at theglobaldispatch@gmail ATTN: Roxie or Butter Bracco

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