Police: Deaths to be investigated as ...

Police: Deaths to be investigated as murder-suicide

Posted in the Vallejo Forum


Vallejo, CA

#1 Mar 9, 2013
Police: Deaths to be investigated as murder-suicide
Identities of victim, suspect released

Nearly a week after their bodies were found, two Vallejo residents shot to death were identified Friday, and police say they were involved in a murder-suicide.

The murder victim was identified as Jeanette Ross, 52, an American Canyon school custodian. Her live-in companion, Marvin Taylor, 52, was identified as the shooter, Vallejo police said.

Police believe Taylor fatally shot Ross, then later himself with the same gun, police said.

Acquaintances of Ross have raised concerns in the past several days about the delay in publicly releasing the identities of the two.

Lt. Jim O'Connell, describing the shooting as a “tragic event,” said Friday that murder-suicides are more complicated than other types of homicides, and that the department wanted to release the type of investigation at the same time as the identities.

“I don't want to release incorrect information — so, that's why I delayed,” O'Connell said.“I want to be thorough and accurate, and not call one person ‘murderer' when they weren't. Because you can't reel that back in.”

Police expect to release further information surrounding the incident soon, O'Connell said.

While O'Connell could not confirm Ross' occupation, Donaldson Way Elementary School fifth grade teacher Scott Thomason said he worked with her daily for the past nine years.

“(Ross) has probably been working at the school for more than 20 years,” Thomason told the Times-Herald.
“Jeanette was very hard working. A custodian's jobs involve a lot of physical activity. She was always there from 5:30 a.m. until school is out... She never once complained about her job. She personified something that I have always told my children, which is if you take pride in what you do, there's a great nobility in it.”

Thomason said it was his understanding that Ross and Taylor had previously been her significant other, but that the two had broken up. Thomason described Taylor as a “very quiet spoken” and a “really nice person” that he understood to have significant health issues.

“To me it's a double tragedy,” Thomason said.“It's easy to make him to be a monster, and clearly what happened is inexcusable, but he probably saw no hope.”

Donaldson Way Elementary School Principal Marilyn Abelon had been scheduled to be in Indiana for the week, but returned to California after hearing the news, Thomason said.

“The school district is devastated,” Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources Ashley Halliday said.“She had many family connections in the school district.”

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