Police connect guns, bullet casings and blood in murder-suicide case
Photo: Video by kgun9.com
CREATED Jun. 7, 2012
Reporter: Kevin Keen
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Tempe police shared new, graphic details Thursday about what detectives found in the home of the Butwins, the family of five that went missing in what's being treated as a case of murder-suicide. Five burned bodies and the family SUV were found in Pinal County desert over the weekend.
“When investigators arrived at the scene, they uncovered, after going inside the residence, blood inside of several of the bedrooms,” Sgt. Jeff Glover told reporters. “They were also able to find shell casings in the bedrooms as well.”
The blood found was "consistent with a gunshot wound," Glover said.
Also revealed: Pinal County sheriff's deputies discovered two guns in the Butwin family SUV during the initial search. The two guns match the caliber of the shell casings found in the Butwin's home, police added.
These new details were made public Thursday after Pima County medical examiners confirmed: two of the people burned that day were the Butwin family parents, James and Yafit.
Chief examiner Dr. Gregory Hess said his team compared the parents' dental records with teeth found in the vehicle.
“Both adults had dental restorations--repaired cavities or the like,” Hess told KGUN9 News. “Those restorations show up opaque on an X-ray so it'll be kind of a bright white color in comparison to the kind of lighter blue background of where the bone would be. Those restorations are very distinctive.”
Hess is confident the three other burned bodies are the Butwin children, but says his team needs more time to be certain using dental records.
Glover also said investigators found two suicide notes in this case. Neither were in the home, and he would not say what was written on them. There have been reports one of the notes was written to James' business partner with instructions on how to run the company without him.