CHICAGO -- A woman and three children were found shot to death Wednesday morning in the bedrooms of a Chicago bungalow, part of a crime scene police described as "incomprehensible." Two other people were critically wounded and a suspect -- a relative of the victims -- was in custody.
A 12-year-old girl who was shot at by the suspect as she fled the home alerted police at a nearby gas station, authorities said.
The children were Jihad, the 7-month-old son of the alleged gunman, his 3-year-old niece, Keleasha Larry, and his 16-year-old niece, Keyshai Fields, who a friend said was four months' pregnant. Keyshai and Keleasha were found shot to death in the same bed.
The fourth victim was a 19-year-old woman identified by family members as the alleged gunman's wife, Twanda Thompson, who he married just weeks ago and who was expecting their second child. She and Jihad were found in bed in a separate bedroom with gunshot wounds to their heads, police said.
The two wounded were identified by family members as the alleged gunman's mother, Leona Larry, and his 13-year-old nephew, Demond Larry. They both suffered gunshots to the head and were taken in critical condition to Advocate Christ Hospital in Oak Lawn, a fire department spokesman said.
The suspect was arrested several miles away about an hour and a half after the shootings.
A law enforcement source, citing preliminary information, said the man told police he had been hearing voices that told him to bring his family to Allah. He also told police he didn't have enough ammunition, the source said.
The suspect had been arrested last fall for allegedly beating Thompson, according to records. Just last week, Thompson filed a paternity case against the suspect, records show.
And in recent days, Thompson said the suspect had been fighting because he wanted her to dress in Muslim garb, but she refused, according to Shirina Thompson, the older sister of Twanda Thompson.
The suspect had become a Muslim while in federal prison on a gun charge, relatives said. Recently, he had been acting strangely, talking about "going to Allah," Thompson said.
Twanda had been with the suspect two years, but they had been married for the last two to three weeks, said her sister Shirina Thompson. Tawanda was pregnant with a girl she was going to name Khadijah, she said.
On Tuesday, the suspect had come down from Madison, Wis. with his wife and son and mother to visit his sister, Keisha Larry, according to the suspect's brother, Letisha Larry, 30. "He snapped out and killed them," Larry said. "He was saying some Muslim stuff."
Larry, who also lives in Madison, said her brother had been a "little weird" lately.
"He was like just saying little weird little stuff about (how) he was an angel and we were demons, there's demons in the house," Larry said.
The suspect carried around the Quran, and about a week ago he started telling his family that something in the book told him to kill someone, Letisha Larry said.
She wasn't aware of her brother having any diagnosed mental problems, and she said she thinks he should be brought to justice.
"How you going to shoot your mom and then your wife and kids? That's just crazy," Letisha Larry said. "Your niece and nephew. Why would you do something like that? You were just a killer."
Thompson and her mother Veronica said they were told by police that the suspect opened fire unprovoked, first shooting his wife in the neck and wounding the others in the head. When he saw that his wife was still alive, he shot her in the head, Thompson said.
Police were alerted around 4:25 a.m. Wednesday after a 12-year-old girl ran out of the house and down the street, sources said.
The gunman chased her and fired a shot but missed, a source said. The girl made it to a gas station and was asking someone to call police when a squad car approached and the girl told officers about the shooting, the source said.
Gas station attendants said a young girl burst through the door in her pajamas a little after 4 a.m. They said she was crying and asked one of the attendants to call her mom and the police.
Police put out an alert for a 32-year-old relative from Madison, Wis., who they said had a beard and goatee and was wearing dark clothing.
In the meantime, the suspect left the house, ditching a 9mm handgun along the way, a law enforcement source said. A squad car spotted him at about 5:49 a.m. and he was arrested without incident.
A handgun was recovered, but Chicago Lawn District Cmdr. John Kupczyk said police were still trying to determine whether it was used in the murders.
"This is a really bad crime scene," Kupczyk said. "Something like this is pretty incomprehensible."
The suspect's sister -- who is the mother of two of the dead children -- said she was not at the house at the time but got a call from her 12-year-old daughter who had escaped.
"She called me screaming," Keisha Larry said. "She said, 'He killed everyone.' She told me my brother chased her down the street."
Larry said her mother, Leona Larry, is on a ventilator at the hospital and her son, Demond, was undergoing surgery for a gunshot wound to the face.
The suspect, her brother, has an arrest record dating back to 1995 for battery, drug possession, resisting arrest and escape. He was sentenced in January of this year for a misdemeanor battery conviction, according to records. His most recent address is a halfway house for parolees in Janesville, Wis., though most of his arrests were in the Madison, Wis., area.
Ella Smith, a relative of the family, said her sister-in-law called her this morning screaming and crying.
"She said her brother killed her kids," said Smith. "She said her daughter managed to escape and he chased her down the street shooting."