Apparent murder-suicide involves two elderly relatives - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Apparent murder-suicide involves two elderly relatives

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Two people are dead after an apparent murder suicide in McMinn County.

McMinn County Sheriff Joe Guy is calling it a tragic situation involving two elderly people in the same family. The call to 911 come in just before 8 p.m. Tuesday from a home on County Rd. 754 in Riceville.

"The male person on the line gave the address and said 'murder suicide'," said Sheriff Guy. "That's all they would say was 'murder suicide'."

The troubling call came in just minutes before tragedy. When dispatchers tried to call back, the line was busy.

Officers arrived within minutes. Catherine Dickson, 67, answered the door and said she just got out of the shower.

"She said she was talking to her husband prior to getting in the shower, and that she couldn't find her husband anywhere," the Sheriff said.

Deputies found her 65-year-old husband, Kenneth Dickson, in the backyard with a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Dickson's aunt, 85-year-old Helena Spect, was smothered to death in her bed.

Sheriff Guy said it was a "strange" case. Kenneth Dickson did not have a criminal past. Investigators found notes he had left in the home and learned of a strained relationship between the man and his aunt.

"He had assumed care for his elderly aunt when no one else would," Sheriff Guy said, adding the elderly woman was a stroke victim who hadn't been living at the residence for long.

"She just sort of demanded a certain level of care due to her health problems that perhaps, and we're speculating a little bit here, that the pressure of that just wore on him for some reason and caused him to do what he did."

MCSO is still investigating. No charges have been filed.

READ MORE | McMinn Co. Sheriff Deputies investigate apparent murder-suicide

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