PLANO (CBSDFW.COM) – Police say one of the people hospitalized after a fatal shooting at a Plano home has died, bringing the total killed to nine, including the suspect, who was fatally shot by police.
One survivor is left as police are still processing the scene of the gruesome murders at the Spring Creek Parkway home.
“They were having a cookout, getting ready to watch the Cowboys,” said Plano Police Chief Greg W. Rushin. “We’ve never had a shooting of this magnitude; never had this many victims…”
Police said one of the victims, Meredith Hight, 27, recently filed for divorce from the shooter — Spencer Hight. A high school valedictorian, Meredith married Spencer on September 11, 2011. The couple stopped living together in March.
Meredith worked at the Local Public House Bar & Grill down the street from the home where a total of 9 adults in their 20s and 30s were shot.
“Around 8 p.m., we were getting ready to switch over to the Cowboys game when all of a sudden, I hear this ‘pop! pop! pop!’ I’m thinking, who’s shooting off fireworks at this hour,” neighbor Carolyn Edwards described.
The Plano Police Department was initially contacted around 8:30 Sunday evening about shots fired in the 1700 block of West Spring Creek Parkway. When the first officer arrived at the scene he also heard gunshots, saw “bodies down in the backyard” and saw an active shooter inside the home.
At the home Monday morning Plano police spokesman David Tilley explained, “The first responding officer got there and heard gunshots coming from inside the residence so he made entry inside… he was confronting the suspect and [sic] ultimately shooting and killing him.”
That officer is now on paid administrative leave with pay pending the investigation, according to Rushin.
“The officer showed great bravery,” said Rushin.
After the suspect was killed the officer continued through the house. “During a search of inside the residence, for any possible victims or other suspects, he located nine individuals that also had gunshot wounds,” Tilley said.
Also located were multiple firearms of differing calibers, makes and models.
Police are still trying to determine the suspect’s motive but say he had ties to the home. They called the crime an isolated incident and have yet to identify the shooter.
Apart from the Hight’s, police haven’t released any additional information about how the victims were connected.
“There’s a lot of speculation out there and we’re not gonna speculate. It’s something that we want to make sure that we now…. we don’t know if these individuals are related,” Tilley said. “We suspect that they’re probably at least known to each other, since they were in the same residence. But again, what they were doing there and what caused all this to take place is part of what we’re looking into.”
Police said they’ve never seen an incident of this magnitude in Plano and neighbors are in shock. Kelsey Harker said, “There were a ton of cops and ambulances and fire trucks. More than I’ve ever seen here in Plano.”
Glenn Peterson lives in the area and was also surprised by the incident. “It’s amazing to see how many police are out here,” he said. “You know something’s serious when you see that many… but it’s comforting that they’re here doing their job.”
Police say they will continue to process the scene and are working with the Texas Rangers on the case.
No officers were injured in the shooting.