SAN DIEGO — A New Year’s Day shooting that left four people dead at a condominium near San Diego was a murder-suicide involving a 25-year-old Navy pilot who killed himself, officials said Wednesday.
John Robert Reeves shot himself in the head, and the three others with him were murdered, the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department said, citing autopsy results.
Fellow Navy pilot Lt. David Reis, also 25, was killed by a gunshot wound to the torso and his 24-year-old sister, Karen, suffered a gunshot wound to the head and chest, officials said. A 31-year-old Chula Vista man, Matthew Saturley, was shot multiple times.
No details on the motive of the killings were released. Officials previously said that one of the men was found dead in the doorway of the three-story condo and the bodies of two men and a woman were inside the home.
The deaths shook Coronado, a picturesque peninsular enclave of 24,000 people on San Diego Bay that draws tourists and recorded only one homicide in 2010. The city is home to Naval Air Station North Island, serves as a training area for Navy SEALs, and is a haven for Navy retirees.
The Marine Corps says Reeves, of Prince Frederick, Md., and Lt. Reis, of Bakersfield, Calif. were both Navy officers and F/A-18 fighter pilots. They were assigned to the Marine Fighter Attack Training Squadron 101 of the Third Marine Aircraft Wing at Miramar Air Station.
Both men joined the Navy through the Reserve Officer Training Corps in 2008 at separate universities. Reeves was commissioned in the Navy through ROTC at Penn State University while Lt. Reis was commissioned in the Navy through ROTC at the University of New Mexico.
Lt. Col. Robert Brodie expressed his support for the families of both men and urged people to pray for them.
“Our condolences go out to the families, friends, fellow service members and Coronado community during this time of mourning,” Lt. Col. Brodie said.
Neighbor Don Hubbard, a retired Navy commander, said the Navy pilots lived together. Mr. Hubbard was awakened by shots that he thought were fired by New Year’s revelers. He went back to sleep, but two hours later got a phone call and heard SWAT teams swarming the area.
The Reises both came from a tight-knit, religious family and seemed inseparable at times, according to family friends.
Lt. Reis held a mechanical engineering degree from New Mexico and his sister graduated from the University of California, San Diego in 2009.
The siblings grew up together in Bakersfield and were close to each other even after college, said the Rev. Michael Braun of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church. Lt. Reis, an Eagle Scout, took his younger sister under his wing when they were altar servers together.
“The family can’t find a picture of him without her in it,” Father Braun said.
The family was together in San Diego last week to prepare for the possibility that Lt. Reis would be assigned elsewhere, Father Braun said. The brother and sister will be buried together.