On Friday morning, a 14-year-old girl and her 51-year-old father were discovered in a fatal state in their upstate New York house.
According to the Baldwinsville Central School District, the young girl, Ava Wood, was a ninth grader at Durgee Junior High School. The police found the bodies after the mother of the teenager reported that she had not heard from her daughter or seen her leave for school.
During a phone call with the father the night before, he allegedly told her “This is how it ends for us.”
In a press conference, Police Chief Michael Lefancheck expressed his sadness, “It’s difficult, to say the least. It’s not an easy scene for either of us to witness. Both the sheriff and I have been in law enforcement for a long time and to have to walk through a scene like that is not an easy thing to do.” Both Ava and her father Christopher were found with gunshot wounds to the head, with his being self-inflicted.
Two days prior, Sheriff Toby Shelley reported that Christopher Wood had sent threatening text messages to his estranged wife and that there had been a separate incident of stalking last year.
In response, the Baldwinsville Central School District has set up crisis counseling for its students and cancelled all after-school activities. Acting Superintendent Joseph M. DeBarbieri stated in a statement, “It is important to provide children with a safe space to discuss their sorrows and needs in this tragic moment.” He continued, “If you find that your child needs more support, our counselors are prepared to supply resources and advice.” Closing his message, he said, “We are a tight-knit school community, and our hearts are broken by this tragedy. On behalf of the school, we would like to express our sympathies to the family and friends of Ava during this difficult time.”