2 women found dead in Maryland home, killing both inside, police say

Authorities say a shooting inside a Silver Spring, Md., home early Sunday morning is being investigated as a homicide.

The Silver Spring Police Department said they received a call just after 1 a.m. Sunday to investigate a home invasion in the 3400 block of Dunbar Place. When officers arrived, they found the bodies of the 60-year-old resident, who they later identified as Barbara Richards, and a 51-year-old neighbor who they later identified as Alfred Beranek.

“Neighbors that we talked to said that Ms. Richards and Mr. Beranek were best friends and she was like his second mother,” a police spokeswoman told The Washington Post.

Investigators were initially unsure if the two were killed in the invasion or if the two lived in the same home. It is believed, however, that one of the two was killed and the other was still inside when officers arrived. They were found with upper body gunshot wounds, police said. No one else was found at the scene.

The police spokeswoman said that the department is “still evaluating” any possible suspects.

This is the second homicide in the city in less than a week, as the Taneytown, Md., woman was also found dead outside a home in the Dundalk section of Baltimore County last Thursday. Police said an altercation happened between two men outside the home and one of the men later ran off, leaving his girlfriend. When the woman returned inside, she found her boyfriend dead from gunshot wounds. Police later identified the man as Jose A. Estrella-Ortiz, 32, of Dundalk. They said they are continuing to investigate the circumstances surrounding the homicide.

The city has, however, seen a significant decrease in its homicide rate since 2002, when there were 132 murders. In 2012, the city had 26 murders. In 2015, the number fell to 27, then 23 last year, before the Taneytown murder and the Silver Spring murder on Sunday.

The city is still the second deadliest city in Maryland, behind Baltimore. In 2016, though, Baltimore ended its streak of setting a record low by setting the record for its most murders in a year.

Read the full story at The Washington Post.

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