SAN JOSE, Calif. - San Jose police are investigating the shooting death of three people, a crime they’re characterizing as a murder-suicide, which ended up in the deaths of a couple and an apartment security guard who stepped in to help.
The deaths occurred Sunday about 1:30 a.m. in a part of the city not accustomed to violence: Crescent Village Apartments near Cisco Way and River Oaks Parkway.
Police said a couple with six children were having a domestic dispute in the parking lot when the apartment security guard tried to intervene.
Police say the man fatally shot the guard, the woman and then turned the gun on himself.
Police said the gun he used had a serial number scratched off, which is illegal in California.
None of those killed were immediately identified.
A woman at the complex who didn’t want to be identified said she was watching a movie when she heard something unusual.
"But I thought it was like knocking or fireworks because this is a pretty safe neighborhood. So, I didn't expect it to be a shooting."
After arriving on the scene, police found three people had been shot and killed just outside the building, two men and a woman, with at least one gunshot each.
In the middle of the night, having little information, some residents were on edge.
"We don't know if the shooter is still out there you know we don't know if he's going to like come up. We don't know if it was a random robbery. We don't know if it was targeted. So, obviously, it's a very scary thing," the woman said.
A shooting of any kind is rare in this neighborhood with high-end apartments surrounded by tech companies and tech workers.
"We think it’s a safe neighborhood, and that’s why we got a place here, so we moved here last October after some research because it’s close to Intel campus and also Cisco campus," said a tech worker named Bharath.
Around the corner from the crime scene, investigators examined an SUV, but have not said how the vehicle might be linked to the crime.
By afternoon, as more residents learned about what happened, it appeared there was no danger to the public.
Still, some said they need to know more before they can fully relax.
"It’s a little unsettling, something like this happening, yeah, a bit shocking," said Kee Regulagedda, a resident of the building.
"Once we understand more I think we’ll feel a little more comfortable," said Bharath.
The murders bring this year’s homicide rate in San Jose to 16.