GROTON — Four people were slain at a residence on Common Street in an incident authorities called a domestic-violence homicide. It was the town’s first murder in over two decades.
Orion Krause, a man believed to be in his 20s, was arrested and faces four counts of murder when he is arraigned in Ayer District Court on Monday.
The victims all died of blunt-force trauma, according to Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan, who addressed the media at a late-night press conference at the Groton police station.
Police received a call shortly after 6 p.m. Three individuals were found dead inside the home, two females and one male. And another female was found dead outside the home, Ryan said.
Authorities said the crime was not random and that the victims knew Krause.
It appears to be “tragic family violence,” Ryan said, adding a weapon was recovered but she declined to say what it was.
She did not identify the victims, but said two were middle-aged females and one older male and one older female.
Ryan said it appears there were familial relationships.
Police Chief Donald Palma said, “There is no cause for alarm. This was not a random act.”
There was an active homicide investigation continuing into Friday night at 80 Common St.
WHDH TV was quoting sources identifying three of the victims as an elderly couple and a caretaker.
Police had Common Street completely blocked off with barriers and were not allowing the media anywhere near the home, which records indicate was built in 1900. The multifamily home of more than 4,300 square feet is set back from the road. It was last sold in 1992 for $328,000.
Assessors’ records list the owners of the house are F (Frank) Danby Lackey III and Elizabeth Lackey. They’re in their late 80s.
According to a 990 form, they have a family foundation. They are listed as officers, along with Elizabeth Krause, Carolyn Lackey and …. John Lackey … all of Groton, under the family P.O. box.
The slayings were the first in town in more than two decades. The last homicide in Groton was in 1996.
According to a story in The Sun in 2012, Heather Santerre, 19 at the time, had convinced her boyfriend to murder her little sister.
Santerre had found 16-year-old Stephanie Santerre’s diary and read it.
In its pages, Stephanie had written of her crush on Heather’s boyfriend, Paul D. Jones, according to news accounts at the time.
Heather Santerre and Jones plotted the murder, carried it out and soon after were charged with the crime.
A year and a half later, Santerre was sentenced to 15 to 20 years in prison, for manslaughter and accessory before the fact of manslaughter.
Jones, who also went by the name Paul Reed, was sentenced to life in prison without parole for murder.
State Department of Correction spokeswoman Cara Savelli said Santerre was released from South Middlesex Correctional Center in Framingham on May 25 of 2012.