Matthew Magdzas, Iraq Vet, Kills Family in Murder Suicide
Matthew Magdzas Shot and Killed His Pregnant Wife, Their 13-Month-Old Daughter Lila, Their Three Dogs and Then Himself
The reason behind the tragic murder suicide that has left an entire family dead is not known and police report that no suicide note has been found. Friends and family who are devastated by the news say that they did not think the couple were having any marital problems or that they were under any undue stress from the upcoming birth of their daughter.
Matthew Magdzas was a 23-year-old Wisconsin National Guard soldier who served in the Iraq war and received a combat badge according to the Associated Press. His pregnant wife April Oles-Magdzas was due to give birth to their second daughter on Wednesday, but authorities think the killings occurred sometime on Tuesday. It was April's mother who discovered the bodies when she came to the couples' house in Wisconsin on Wednesday.
Investigators will now be looking at Magdzas' medical records to see if he was being treated for, or had showed signs of post traumatic stress disorder; those details will not be released to the public as the military does not disclose health records.
The family has not commented on the deaths, but a friend of April's, 36-year-old Tessa Buscko spoke briefly to the AP:
"He must have had a flashback or something. I don't know. That's crazy. Matt doesn't seem like that type of person," Buscko said. "The only thing people can think of is coming back from the war and trying to live a normal life."
Magdzas volunteered to deploy to Iraq in 2006 with the 121st Field Artillery Regiment where he was tasked with protecting convoys moving from Kuwait into the northern region of Iraq. He received a combat action badge for his actions during a 'small-arms' battle in November 2006 when he was serving as a vehicle gunner.
According to the AP, Magdzas worked for a company called Better Defense when he returned from the war and he gave classes on how to properly operate a firearm.
Friends and people in the community that knew both April and Matthew describe them as friendly and loving people, with April being known for her passion and desire to work with young people.
A 9-mm handgun was found in the house that investigators believe was the murder weapon, but that has not been confirmed at this time.