CRIME

Lakshmi Bhat, Anand Venkata die in Falls Church, murder-suicide

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A 36-year-old man shot and killed his mother-in-law inside a Falls Church apartment before killing himself Monday, officials say.

Just before 10 a.m., Fairfax County authorities responded to call that started as an unknown complaint but evolved into shots fired at the South tower of the 5500 block of Seminary Road at the Skyline Towers apartment complex. Police arrived at an apartment on the 21st floor to find two people dead - one male, one female.

Fairfax County Police identified Tuesday the victims as 62-year-old Lakshmi Bhat and 36-year-old Anand Venkata. Officials say that Venkata shot Bhat, his mother-in-law, before turning the gun on himself.

Jonathan Torres was at home babysitting his brothers in the South tower and called his mother and locked the doors after he heard a gunshot.

Soon after, his grandmother rushed home from work to take the boys away from the scene.

For many residents of Skyline Towers, the crime comes as a big surprise. But not to Martha Bryant, who plans to move out as soon as she can.

"Things have been going on here ever since I got here four years ago and it just seems to be getting worse," Bryant says.

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