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Teacher & Stepson Dead In Navarro County Murder-Suicide

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NAVARRO COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) – A small Navarro County town is coping with the loss of two residents in an apparent murder-suicide. The sheriff’s department is investigating why a 16-year-old boy shot and killed his stepmother.

The daughter of Mary Beth Autry contacted police saying she had been unable to contact her mother.

When police went to the house, just west of the town of Blooming Grove, they found Eric Gerard inside, with what is suspected to be a self-inflicted a gunshot wound. The boy was taken by air ambulance to Parkland Hospital in Dallas, but later died.

After finding the teen police continued looking for Autry. Her body was soon located in a grassy area about 100 yards from the house.  She had been fatally shot.

Gerard was a freshman at Blooming Grove High School and Autry was a 3rd grade teacher in the nearby Dawson School District. Both schools had grief counselors available Thursday.

The superintendent of the Blooming Grove ISD, Mike Baldree, says in the small school everyone knew each other. “It’s all on the staff, hard on the community. You hate it when any child’s life is cut short, whether it be an accident or otherwise.”

Officials with the Navarro County Sheriff’s Office aren’t releasing specifics about the shootings. “The exact details, we’re not going into,” Cox said. “We don’t want to reveal any more. We have to — in case it was not a murder-suicide.”

Cox says the shootings are part of an ongoing Navarro County Sheriff’s Office investigation.

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