Police have not discussed a possible motive for Sunday's violence

By Chris Harris
April 14, 2021 09:58 AM
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Molly Lillard and Royce Lillard
Molly and Royce Lillard
| Credit: Facebook

Molly Lillard, the 28-year-old daughter of former New York Jets wide receiver Al Toon, was shot to death over the weekend by her husband, who later took his own life with the same gun, according to authorities in Scottsdale, Ariz.

Police confirm that Lillard — who was a member of the University of Michigan women's volleyball team between 2010 and 2013 — was killed shortly before 5 p.m. on Sunday, allegedly by her husband of two years, 36-year-old Royce Dale Lillard III.

Officers received calls about a shooting in the home, according to a Scottsdale Police statement, and arrived to find Molly in the front of the house, suffering from multiple gunshot wounds.

The new mom, who'd only given birth eight months ago, was rushed to a hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

According to police, Lillard's husband barricaded himself inside the house, and for hours, officers tried making contact with him. At 11 p.m., they entered the residence and found him dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

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The couple's child was present for the murder-suicide, but sustained no injuries.

A motive for the murder-suicide has not been disclosed by police.

A GoFundMe campaign has been launched online, with all proceeds benefiting the couple's young son.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that Lillard was a four-year letter-winner for the Wolverines, earning honorable mention all-American honors from the American Volleyball Coaches Association as a senior in 2013.

Lillard's father, Al Toon, 57, spent his entire NFL career with the Jets, who selected him during the first round of the 1985 draft.

Toon played with the team until his retirement in 1992. He earned first-team All Pro distinction in 1986, and received three Pro Bowl selections over his eight-year career.

Toon is one of only two retired players in NFL history to play fewer than 110 games and still record over 500 receptions.