The mother of a 6-year-old boy who was fatally shot by his father in what Massachusetts police say was a murder-suicide said years before that she feared for his life, according to court documents obtained by multiple outlets.
In 2013, Anthony Scaccia’s mother wrote in an application for a restraining order against William Scaccia Jr., 49, that his behavior made her worry he was “thinking of killing Anthony and himself,” according to CBS Boston.
On Friday, Anthony’s body was discovered at the top of the stairs in his Foxborough home with a fatal gunshot wound. His father’s body was also found in the home with an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to police.
Gasoline was found poured throughout the home’s upstairs hallways, with a burn spot indicating that it had been lit but didn’t catch, according to WCVB. It is believed Scaccia unsuccessfully attempted to set the residence on fire before killing himself.
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According to a next door neighbor, on Thursday night, the boy’s grandmother frantically knocked on her neighbor’s door and asked for his help.
“The grandmother came over, she was a mess, she was screaming for help,” Richard Shain, a next door neighbor told the Boston Herald. “She came to the door and explained to me there was just a fire in her house, that the grandson was up in the house, she didn’t know if he was still alive, but to come help get him out of the house because there had just been a fire.”
“I got in there and it reeked like gas, there was gasoline all over the upstairs. When I walked up to the top of the stairs, [Anthony] was lying at the top of the stairs, he was purple. I checked his pulse and I went back downstairs and I called 911,” Shain continued.
A handgun, shell casings and a note believed to have been written by Scaccia were found by investigators, CBS Boston reports.
Speaking to WCVB, Scaccia’s family said he had served in the military for 20 years and suffered from PTSD.
“We were concerned about Billy recently because we knew he was really sad and really depressed. We could not break through that. We could not break through,” his sister, Krissy Scaccia told the outlet. “We could not make his see the good in anything that was around him. We did not foresee him taking his son with him.”
Scaccia and Anthony’s mother had once lived in the home together but were estranged. The Herald reports that he had recently applied for a gun permit but was denied due to his history with police, according to the outlet.
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Anthony was a kindergartener at Burrell Elementary School, according to WCVB.
“Our Foxborough Community was shaken this morning by unbearably tragic news,” Spinelli said in a statement obtained by WCVB. “Our hearts go out to this sweet little boy who was just starting his educational journey and to those who loved and cared for him.”
Foxborough and Norfolk authorities did not return PEOPLE’s calls for comments. Scaccia’s family could not be reached Monday.
A GoFundMe page has been set up for memorial and funeral expenses. “While emotions over this horrible incident are totally understandable, we as a community need to come together to help this family in every way we can,” the page creator wrote. “They need our love, compassion, prayers and financial support to deal with what lies ahead.”