The town of Cheshire is reeling after a local dad shot and killed his son before taking his own life in their home on Cornwall Avenue, according to a police.
On Wednesday morning, police identified the two as Christopher P. Settembri, 48, and his 19-year-old son, Christopher A. Settembri, both residents of the home at 772 Cornwall Avenue.
The younger Settembri was a recent graduate of Cheshire High School, according to the school system.
Police said investigators discovered the bodies around 4 p.m. Tuesday, and autopsies revealed that both had been dead for hours before authorities were called to the scene.
A neighbor said the elder Settembri was a married father of four and a stay-at-home dad. His wife, who had been unable to reach him by phone, arrived home to discover the scene Tuesday afternoon, but the couple's youngest daughter – still in elementary school – had already discovered the bodies.
"At this point, we don't have any information that would help us to understand why something like this happened," Cheshire police Chief Neil Dryfe said Wednesday. "We have not been able to find a note or any other indication at this time."
Officials said the teen's body was located in a downstairs bedroom. His father was found in an upstairs bathroom, with an apparent self-inflicted wound. Police said both were shot once.
"Since I live around the corner, you just never know," said 19-year-old Cheshire resident Daniel Byrd. "And especially in this town, if you don't know the family, you know someone that knows the family."
The State Police Major Crimes Division is investigating, and the medical examiner's office was been called out to help.
The road was closed near the Doolittle Elementary School at 735 Cornwall Avenue while authorities work to piece together what happened.
"It's a horrible tragedy anytime you have an untimely death, particularly this close to the holidays," Dryfe said.
Cheshire school Supt. Greg J. Florio released a statement saying support services will be available to all members of the school community "as long as they are required."
"The Cheshire Public Schools staff is well trained and has in place plans to address the impact of this type of incident on students and staff. Our plans include reassuring students that school is a safe place and that if they feel anxious or upset in any way that they should speak to their teacher or any adult in the school who will direct them to the appropriate counseling staff," Florio said.
It's the community's second major loss in a week. Nineteen-year-old Isabella Gozzo died in a crash on Route 9 in Berlin when her boyfriend lost control of the car on Saturday.
"A couple of really big things have happened in the past few years to this community," said Kim Liso-Perez, alluding to the Cheshire home invasion that resulted in the murders of a local mom and two daughters. "It's a small community and everybody is pretty close knit, and there's a lot of close family ties. Everybody knows everybody; it's one of those things."
Check back for updates on this developing story.