Neighbors react to apparent murder-suicide in Evansville

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Published: Nov. 27, 2021 at 7:15 PM CST|Updated: Nov. 29, 2021 at 12:20 PM CST
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EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - Authorities are investigating an incident that left two people dead.

It happened around 6:10 p.m. Saturday in the 1000 block of West Iowa Street.

Police say about two hours prior, 34-year-old Rachael Feazell called 911 because her ex-boyfriend, 46-year-old Ryan Hopkins, came to her house and slashed her current boyfriend’s tires.

Officers took a report and say they told Feazell to file a protective order if she felt unsafe.

“This was a very emotionally charged run,” said Sgt. Anna Gray with Evansville Police. “Obviously not only for families involved, but for the officers as well.”

Police took Feazell’s report and left. They didn’t know it would it escalate to a shooting that left two people dead.

“At the time when they respond to the scene, it’s a criminal mischief matter,” said Gray. “We get these criminal mischief cases multiple times throughout the day.”

Gray says Hopkins left before authorities got there. Gray says since Feazell didn’t report that Hopkins threatened her face to face, and Hopkins was vandalizing a truck that wasn’t Feazell’s property, all they could cite him with was a misdemeanor, then move onto other calls.

When people call for help, we respond,” said Gray. “Unfortunately, we cannot predict the future.”

Police reports say Hopkins came back two hours later, shot Feazell, then shot himself.

“Ultimately, I know the question is, well what could have been done more, or could this have been prevented? The bottom line is, the offender is the one who made the decision to act violent that day,” said Gray. “He’s the one that made the decision to pull the trigger and to take an innocent life.”

Neighbor Lucien Harris says he was close with Feazell, and talked to her minutes before the shooting.

“I was like, ‘Well I’ll see you after I get back from my aunt’s birthday party.’ Well unfortunately I didn’t get to see her because 20 minutes later is when everything happened,” Harris said.

Harris says Feazell was kind, generous, and made a point to be friendly to all her neighbors.

“When they told me, and told me who it was I was just heart broken,” said Harris. “My heart just dropped and I just stood in the middle of the street at her house, like this is not real. Why would somebody come back and do this to her?”

Police say no one else was hurt, although a child was also in the home at the time of the shooting.

Gray says this is a reminder to keep a look out for signs of domestic violence.

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