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story.lead_photo.caption Officers direct traffic Friday at the intersection of Crossover Road and Gordon Hollow Road in Gravette. Police were called to a shooting situation where they found four people dead in an apparent murder-suicide on a nearby property. - Photo by Charlie Kaijo

GRAVETTE -- Police identified Justin, Inga, Levi and Casey Barnes as the people shot Friday at a rural Gravette home. Justin Barnes is the suspected shooter, Capt. Chris Kelley of the Gravette Police Department said at a news conference this morning. Inga is his wife and Levi and Casey are adult children.

Police said they believe Justin Barnes shot himself as law enforcement arrived on the scene.

Another adult lives at the home but was not there at the time of the shooting.

The Benton County Sheriff’s Office is assisting in the ongoing investigation. The bodies were sent to the state crime lab.

EARLIER:

Four people were found dead in an apparent murder-suicide Friday afternoon, police said.

Authorities would not release the names or ages of the people found in the home on Crossover Road, said Capt. Chris Kelley with the Gravette Police Department. Kelley said the four people were related or lived at the residence. No one else was at the house, he said.

Two bodies were located outside and two were found inside the home, Benton County Coroner Daniel Oxford said.

A news conference with more detail may be held today, Kelley said.

"This is very tragic," Kelley said. "We're a small community here. We know a lot of people and a lot of us grew up here. It hits close to home whenever something like this happens because a lot of times it's someone that we we know personally. The community more than likely would know them personally."

Police received a call about 3:30 p.m. Friday reporting a man had barricaded himself in a home, and when officers arrived they called for backup, Kelley said. Police believe the initial call to police was from one of the people who were killed, Kelley said.

The Benton County sheriff's office SWAT team and police from Decatur and Sulphur Springs responded to the scene, Kelley said.

A gun was used, but Kelley wouldn't say if it was a handgun or rifle. There were multiple guns at the scene, he said.

Oxford and two of his deputy coroners were still at the scene around 7 p.m., and he said he expected them to be there another hour. He was unsure when police would leave the home.

"There is a lot to go through," Kelley said of processing the scene.

Authorities were looking for indications as to why the shooting occurred, he said. Kelley said to his knowledge police previously had not been called to the home.

Crossover Road is east of Gravette. A sheriff's deputy blocked the road at its intersection with Gordon Hollow Road, which is off Arkansas 72.

The situation was an isolated incident, Kelley said.

"We'll continue investigating it and try to figure out, ultimately, why this occurred on this tragic day," he said.

Photo by Charlie Kaijo
Capt. Chris Kelley with Gravette's Police Department speaks Friday during a news conference at the intersection of Crossover Road and Gordon Hollow Road in Gravette. Police were called to a shooting situation where they found four people dead in an apparent murder-suicide.

State Desk on 07/06/2019

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