Detectives believe a 40-year-old man and a 39-year-old woman who were found inside their Preston Hills at Mill Creek apartment Monday afternoon died as a result of a murder-suicide.
Gwinnett County Police Department officers discovered Lachica Ringwood and her boyfriend, Jamaya Morris, in their fourth-floor apartment shortly after 3 p.m. after Preston Hills personnel let them inside to perform a welfare check, according to department spokesman Cpl. Wilbert Rundles.
One of Ringwood’s family members had called police, saying she was concerned for Ringwood’s safety because “Lachica’s boyfriend, Jamaya, had openly argued with Lachica in front of the family and had recently made comments that had them concerned,” Rundles said.
“A family member hadn’t heard from (Ringwood) in a couple of days, which was odd for them,” he said. “They had last spoken to (her) a few days ago; they usually spoke every day and they weren’t able to get in touch with (her).”
Officers dispatched to the call arrived “within two minutes,” Rundles said. Inside the apartment, they found Morris lying on top of Ringwood with “an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.”
“Once his body was removed, detectives discovered that Lachica also had a gunshot wound that appeared to be the result of her death,” Rundles said. “The evidence and scene examination has led detectives to believe this case is a murder-suicide with Lachica Ringwood being the victim.”
The Gwinnett County Medical Examiner will make an official ruling on the manner of death once Ringwood and Morris’ autopsies have been completed.
This is not the first time police have been called to Preston Mills, which is about a mile from Rock Springs Elementary School.
In April 2015, Gwinnett officers were dispatched to the complex after a woman said she shot her husband in self-defense. She was convicted of murder in October 2017.
Neighbors told the Daily Post, however, they were surprised about the murder-suicide, with one man saying Monday’s incident was “the first time (he’s) seen the police here.”
Shelby Wetherford, who recently moved into the building the homicide occurred in, said she was shaken up by the incident.
“I moved in less than a week ago — it’s terrifying, absolutely,” she said. “It’s crazy; very shocking.”