Former Cleveland firefighter accused of killing girlfriend, girlfriend's son
Police found the suspect, a former Cleveland firefighter, more than one hundred miles away in middle Tennessee.
There is new information surrounding a double homicide in Cleveland. Police found the suspect, a former Cleveland firefighter, more than 100 miles away in middle Tennessee. He was charged him with two counts of first-degree murder.
Ross Anderson is accused of killing 30-year-old Rachael Johnson and her five-year-old son, Colton. Investigators say both victims were shot. It happened at a home on Hillview Drive off Mouse Creek Road.
This marks the third and fourth homicide the Cleveland Police Department has worked this year. They say this case is especially hard to investigate because it involves a child.
"Opened our door about 2:20 and the whole neighborhood was blocked off. It was getting taped at our front door. We were getting ready for work. We had to be escorted to the end of the street," says neighbor Veronica Lopez.
Veronica Lopez says the normally quiet Hillview Drive was a sea of lights Monday afternoon.
"I kind of knew something wasn't right because there was an ambulance that wasn't being used. There was a coroner van and too many detectives. So I knew that it was all bad," says Lopez.
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"Co-workers of Ms. Johnson had called concerned about her not showing up for work," says Cleveland Police Chief Mark Gibson.
Police stopped at the home of Rachael Johnson to do a welfare check. Johnson, her five-year-old son, and the family dog had been shot to death.
"It's very hard to work a case with a child. Any time a victim is innocent and there's no justification no reasoning behind an event, it's tough," Gibson.
Police found Johnson's boyfriend, 31-year-old Ross Anderson, more than 130 miles away in Murfreesboro.
According to the Rutherford County Sheriff's Office, early Monday morning, Anderson knocked on a random man's door and asked for a place to stay. The man called 911.
"We were able to work with their law enforcement agency and the TBI to make contact with him," says Gibson.
"I don't think I've ever seen the man. My kids have but I haven't. But they used to walk in the neighborhood. Just a nice, quiet little family," says Lopez.
Neighbors like Lopez say it is hard to comprehend.
"Just so much tragedy, I think. Families affected. It's too close to Christmas. Just horrible," says Gibson.
Chief Gibson says Anderson has already been transported back to Bradley County. He is being evaluated in a local health facility before being transferred to the Bradley County jail.
Anderson was a member of the Cleveland Fire Department for five years before being terminated in May 2014.