Multiple police vehicles gathered near the scene of a deadly house fire and shooting near 47th Drive and Sunnyside Avenue in Phoenix. The mayor called the murder of the family an "unbelievable tragedy" and added that "unspeakable violence" had happened inside the Phoenix home.
Sgt. Trent Crump said someone shot at officers as they went into the home Tuesday morning to help victims, but there's no immediate indication that any of the responders are among the injured.
The shooter is believed to have been a son who shot his parents and sisters; a girl between 8 and 12 years of was among those shot.
Relatives told police the Buckner family moved back to Arizona a few years ago.
Family members told investigators that Alex Buckner, who lived in the home, had received treatment in Oklahoma for drug abuse.
Shortly before 7 a.m., police said the suspected shooter "is down". The caller said her brother shot her. It appears he killed himself, Crump said. At one point, officers announced the suspect was 'down'. "They didn't suspect this now and this was completely out of character and they did not see this coming".
Crump says those killed were all related, and the gunman was shot by police.
"The leadership in fire and in the police department are talking together to ensure that everybody is safe and yet effective when we respond to situations like we had [Tuesday]", Shelly Jamison, deputy chief with the Phoenix Fire Department, said.
They all lived in the home on Sunnyside Ave.
The police have no record of ever having been called to the house before.
The catalyst and timing of the incident is a mystery.
"We know that we shot the suspect".
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Bustamante, preschool teacher, says Emma was bright and charming. “She was so sweet”, Evans said.
"I started writing the correct way for her to show her how to do the letters", explained Sammie Evans, who is a retired school teacher and also lives right across the street from the Buckner's. "I told her how handsome she was", she said. "She was bright", Bustamante said.
"We have stuff that the military uses", Jamison said.
Authorities pulled two victims from the home in a cul-de-sac, then a tactical team stormed in 45 minutes later when the gunfire stopped and shot the gunman, Crump said.
Officers investigate the scene of a fatal house fire and shooting Tuesday, Feb 23, 2016, in Phoenix.
Some firefighters battling the blaze stood on the roof to extinguish the flames gushing from the home. When first-responders arrived, they found the house afire. The active shooter inside, however, made it too big a risk.
Police officers dressed in firefighter gear so they could get inside the house to search for the family.
After the fire was extinguished, they found the other victims.
"The police woke us up and asked if they could go in the backyard", said Ted Moss. They are expected to be OK. Really wish this could have turned out better, this is just tragic.
"They willingly risked their lives to save members of that family", Stanton said. Officers donned breathing gear, grabbed fire hoses and ran in, hoping to save lives.
"This is what heroes look like", he said.