Identities Released in Suspected Murder Suicide Leaving Five Dead

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Update by Santa Maria Police Department 
June 24, 2019

Update to ongoing 519 West Taylor homicide investigation

The suspect in this investigation has been identified as Claude Adams, a 64 year old resident of Santa Maria. Based upon information obtained up to this point, it is believed the three deceased persons recovered from 519 West Taylor space 407 include the suspect, Claude Adams, his wife Sherry Adams (65 year old resident of Santa Maria), and their son Seth Adams (a 33 year old resident of Santa Maria). 

The positive identification of the decedents is still pending confirmation from the Santa Barbara County Coroner’s Bureau. SBSO Detective Coroner Biedenger is requesting any family members of the decedents listed above contact him as soon as possible at 805-681-4145.  

SMPD Detectives have learned that Claude Adams had an ongoing dispute with Victims Kurt Bracke and Richard Hanen. As a result of this dispute, Claude was being evicted from the mobile home park. Based on the information obtained thus far, investigators believe Clau de shot and killed both Bracke and Hanen in the clubhouse area of the park before returning to his residence.  

The chronology of events beyond what is stated above is unknown. Investigators believe Claude also killed his wife and son, although the exact cause of death has yet to be verified.

This is an ongoing investigation. SMPD Detectives request anyone with information on this case contact Detective Dix at 805-928-3781 x 2424.  


Source: Santa Maria Police Department 
June 22, 2019

Detectives involved in the homicide investigation at 519 W. Taylor have confirmed a total of 5 persons were killed during this incident.

The unidentified suspect shot and killed 70 year old Kurt Bracke and 78 year old Richard Hanen, both residents of Santa Maria.

The suspected shooter and two additional unidentified victims were located inside of a burnt mobile home. Identification of the suspected gunman and the two additional victims will be released once the Coroners Office confirms their identities.

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a-1571537623 Jun 24, 2019 07:56 PM
Identities Released in Suspected Murder Suicide Leaving Five Dead

Years ago I read of a case wherein a mobile home resident shot and killed his neighbor. The shooter's motive had to do with his ongoing frustration regarding his neighbor always loudly slamming shut a screen door. Apparently talking to the neighbor did no good and the shooter's resolution was to put an end, once and for all, to this inconsiderate neighbor. People really are not meant to live on top of one another, in such terribly close proximity. It's a mystery to me how we don't hear more often of such murderous conclusions.

a-1571537623 Jun 25, 2019 10:06 AM
Identities Released in Suspected Murder Suicide Leaving Five Dead

@ 7:56 - the reason we don't hear of more murders based on how loud you close a screen door is because most civilized people don't resort to guns to solve petty problems. Thank godness for that. But, when someone has underlying issues and unfettered access to guns, then we have the potential for tragedy because of poor impulse control in addition to barbaric gun laws giving everyone access to guns.

PitMix Jun 25, 2019 11:26 AM
Identities Released in Suspected Murder Suicide Leaving Five Dead

CA has the most restrictive gun laws in the Country, yet we still have mass shootings and you can still go down to Big 5, fill out some paperwork, and a couple of days later pick up a .223 ranch rifle that will take a 30 round magazine if you want to kill 30 friends or strangers because you had a back day or week or month or year. The 2nd amendment was really about our ability to resist a tyrannical government but that seems to have been lost now.

a-1571537623 Jun 25, 2019 10:24 AM
Identities Released in Suspected Murder Suicide Leaving Five Dead

@10:03 "Unencumbered" rights to gun ownership is not even close to reality. Our state today has some of the most restrictive gun laws in the nation. Don't believe me? Visit any gun shop and ask them how ones purchases *any* weapon. Then ask them about the additional restrictions in place related to the purchase an AR-15 or handgun. Even a non-gun owner will be shocked at the amount of "limitations" that exist today. educate yourself...please.

420722 Jun 25, 2019 10:10 AM
Identities Released in Suspected Murder Suicide Leaving Five Dead

Bravo, you got to express yourself in big bold letters. That’s your opinion I respect it but it doesn’t change the fact that some people want to ban every single gun which isn’t going to happen and is what I was responding to in the first place. Good day to you.

a-1571537623 Jun 25, 2019 10:03 AM
Identities Released in Suspected Murder Suicide Leaving Five Dead

420722 - that attitude of having an unencumbered, unlimited right to own any guns you want is what is the problem. A person with mental issues should not be able to own guns. NO one should be able to own military style weapons that are capable of killing crowds of people within seconds. The 2nd Amendment right to bear arms SHOULD be limited to some degree, just as the 1st Amendment right to free speech is limited in some cases. No one wants to take your guns. We just want some limitations to make it harder for people (especially those with issues) to get guns. Limitations are not "bans."

PitMix Jun 24, 2019 04:15 PM
Identities Released in Suspected Murder Suicide Leaving Five Dead

Roger, you get rid of guns one at a time. Guns are more dangerous to their owners than anyone else, anyway. Suicide rates are higher for gun owners. If cops can't hit their targets, why do you think poorly trained homeowners would be any better? Now if we are talking about 17th century muzzle loaders, you can have all of those you want. Should make the 2nd Amenders happy.

NostraChumash Jun 23, 2019 12:22 PM
Identities Released in Suspected Murder Suicide Leaving Five Dead

Remember when duels were fought with rapiers?.. It usually took several thrusts to finish an opponent. If there were no guns, fights would be by blade, club, explosives & the ever-slow death..bare hands. No, guns are a necessity of this culture..even in the wrong hands, otherwise you'd not need courts, lawyers, cops or all of the other $ making ops of the country that profits from the suffering of others. Have a nice day.

PitMix Jun 24, 2019 09:11 AM
Identities Released in Suspected Murder Suicide Leaving Five Dead

You start one gun at a time. Eventually you will get them all. Guns are more dangerous to the owner anyway. Suicide rates go up markedly for gun owners. And as for defense, if highly trained cops can hit their target during a crisis, what makes you think an untrained homeowner will do any better? Plus guns stolen in home robberies are a huge part of the gun problem.

CCHandyMan Jun 23, 2019 07:10 AM
Identities Released in Suspected Murder Suicide Leaving Five Dead

According to our local news outlet the melee started at the golf course they have in this park. For some reason the suspected gunman got into an argument with the 2 men who were golfing, went back to his residnecse and returned with a gun and shot them both. He then returned to his residence where an explosion occured shortly after which resulted in a fire that destroyed or damaged a total of 4 homes. The neighbors all said that he was not very friendly and this didn't really surprise some of them.

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