Final victim of 7 identified in Morgan County mass shooting
Morgan County investigators said on social media on Saturday they have no new leads to share on the motive behind the shooting deaths of seven on Friday night in Valhermoso Springs, about 15 minutes outside of Huntsville.
Authorities said Saturday James Wayne Benford, 22, of Decatur, was among the victims. Those identified Friday included a 17-year-old girl; Tammy England Muzzey, 45, and Emily Brooke Payne, 21, both of Valhermoso Springs; Roger Lee Jones Jr., 19, of Decatur; Jeramy Wade Roberts of Athens, 31; and William Zane Hodgin, 18, of Somerville.
Reports of gunfire drew deputies to the house at 11:23 p.m. They found the home on fire and later discovered seven bodies inside after the fire was extinguished.
MCSO’s public information officer Mike Swafford described the scene as “horrific.” Authorities said they had been called to the house for a variety of drug-related activities in the past year, including overdoses and more.
“In my 37 years as a paramedic, deputy coroner and coroner, this is the most major crime scene in Morgan County,” Coroner Jeff Chunn told The Decatur Daily.
The sheriff’s office said on its Facebook page Saturday: “As you would expect, we continue to receive questions and requests for information about the septuple homicide. [This] video of our press briefing ... has most of the information that we are able to share at this time. Our teams are working around the clock to solve this horrific homicide. We hope to provide additional updates in the days ahead.”
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