Ronald Lee Haskell, 33, is seen in an undated booking photo
released by the Harris County Sheriff's Department in
Harris County, Texas. Photo from Reuters
A man was charged with capital murder in the shooting
deaths of four children and their parents at the suburban
Houston home of his former wife's relatives to which he gained
access disguised as a FedEx driver, police said.
Ronald Lee Haskell, 33, has been held without bond since his
arrest on Wednesday night (local time) after a four-hour
standoff with police. The shootings occurred in Spring, about
25 miles (40 kms) north of Houston.
The Harris County Sheriff's Office said Haskell opened fire
on the family, killing two boys ages 4 and 14, two girls ages
7 and 9, and their parents Stephen Stay, 39, and Katie, 33.
Five of them were found dead and one of the children died
after being flown to a hospital, the sheriff's office said.
A 15-year-old girl who survived a shot to the head called
police and told them where the gunman might be going. Police
said this enabled them to intercept Haskell on his way to the
home of other relatives of his former wife.
The teenager was airlifted to a hospital in critical
"We don't know why this happened," said neighbor Paul Anthony
Slawinski. "This man, his wife, and children were the
definition of compassion and charity."
Mark Herman, assistant chief deputy for Harris County
Constable Precinct 4, said in a telephone interview that
Haskell and his wife were divorced, and that the children may
not have known Haskell since he lived in another state.
There were conflicting police reports over whether Haskell
lived in Texas or another state.
Constable Ronald Hickman told a news conference, "Suspect Ron
Haskell, who was taken into custody last night, from what we
can hear came to this location yesterday afternoon late and
came in the guise of a FedEx driver wearing a FedEx shirt.
"He came to this residence, gathered up the children that
were here, and awaited the arrival of their parents. Some
time later, the victims were shot at this residence. We have
learned that Mr. Haskell was married to a relative of the
residents of this home."
FedEx said in a statement that Haskell had once worked for a
contractor used by the shipping company.
"Our heartfelt thoughts and condolences go out to all those
involved in this tragic incident," FedEx said. "Mr. Haskell
formerly provided service for FedEx, but has not done so
Haskell's arraignment was scheduled for Friday. In Texas,
capital murder carries the possibility of the death