Petaluma Couple in Murder-Suicide Had Gun Confiscated After Reported Suicidal Comments

Petaluma police say a 76-year-old man and 75-year-old woman who died in an apparent murder-suicide last week used someone else's gun after their guns were taken away by police following a wellness check.

Police believe Richard Stewart shot his wife Patricia Stewart and then himself at their home in the 800 block of Echo Court at about 4 p.m. last Thursday. There was no evidence the shooting was pre-planned or that the couple made a suicide pact, police said.

Police responded after a family member went to the home and found their parents unconscious and covered in blood.

Officers found a gun at the home during the investigation, which also revealed that police had responded to the home on Oct. 1 after someone reported that Richard Stewart had been making suicidal comments and had been seen loading a gun.

Police said officers took Richard for a mental health evaluation that night and officers took two guns from the home the same day.

According to police, those guns are still in police custody. The gun used in last Thursday's shooting was not registered to either Richard or his wife.

Police said it was obtained without the knowledge of police.

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