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(CBS/AP) GREENWOOD, S.C. - Police in South Carolina have released the 911 call made by the man who murdered his former girlfriend, her parents and two of her children before killing himself on Tuesday. Bryan Sweatt tells the dispatcher, “I’m just stressed out and about to take my life” and a woman in the background can be heard crying, saying “don’t point that at me,” reports CBS affiliate WBTW.
In the call, the dispatcher asks if Sweatt had a gun. He replied: “a 44.” And then the phone line went dead.
In a second call, an out-of breath neighbor tells the dispatcher four children showed up at her door with the oldest, who seemed to be a 4-year-old, telling her somebody killed their mother.
The dispatcher tells the neighbor to ask the girl to describe what she saw, the child is heard in the background saying, “Bryan had a gun with him.” The neighbor can be heard telling the child to calm down, but she continued, saying, “He took my mama in the back of the room.”
An infant is heard in the background crying throughout the entire call.
The mass-murder-suicide occured in a one-story rural home in a tight-knit community of 23,000 people. Six people, including Sweatt, were found shot to death.
Police say Sweatt broke into his girlfriend’s parents’ house Tuesday and waited for the family to come home. When they did, Sweatt fatally shot her, her parents and two children living there and himself, said Greenwood County Sheriff Tony Davis said.
“Once you see a horrific scene like this it never leaves you. It’s with you day in and day out,” he said.
The victims were identified as Richard Fields, 51; his wife, Melissa Fields, 49; their daughter Chandra Fields, 26; and two of the couple’s grandchildren who lived with them: William Robinson, 9; and Tariq Robinson, 11.
Sweatt was in the middle of a custody fight with Chandra Fields over their 7-month-old daughter, who was not among those killed. He also was facing a burglary charge that could have put him behind bars for up to 30 years, and had a criminal record dating back nearly a decade, according to state police records.
Before the killings, Richard Fields had apparently warned Sweatt to stay away from his house and the dirt track Sweatt had built in the backyard for his all-terrain vehicles.
The motive for the killings remains unclear, but Davis said it seemed to be a “domestic violence situation.” He said Sweatt felt that Chandra Fields wasn’t allowing him to see their infant child often enough.
It’s unclear how many - if any - victims had been shot before he made the call at 5:54 p.m. Tuesday from the home.
Sweatt allowed four children to escape - his 7-month-old daughter, the infant’s cousin and two neighborhood children who came to the house after school to play with the Fields’ grandchildren.
No one knows why Sweatt let them live and shot the others, Davis said.