Teen Boy Comes Home From School to Discover 'Bubbly' Mom Killed by Boyfriend in Murder-Suicide
A Florida mother of four was fatally shot by her boyfriend of several months, who then turned the gun on himself in an apparent murder-suicide, according to multiple reports.
On Monday just after 4 p.m., the bodies of Laura Randall, 53, and Gregory Schatz, 45, were discovered by her 17-year-old son at their rented townhouse in West Boca Raton, say authorities and family members, the Sun-Sentinel reports.
The teen had just come home from school when he found the bodies, according to the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, local NBC affiliate WPTV reports.
(The Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.)
Randall, who had four sons ages 17 to 23, had been dating Schatz for a few months, her father, Joseph Altheimer, told the Sun-Sentinel.
“I know no more than anybody else,” Altheimer told the outlet. “He killed her and then he killed himself. That’s all they would tell me.”
He and Randall’s mother and sisters have no idea why Schatz, who described himself on social media as a divorced father with a daughter, committed the crime, local ABC affiliate WBPF reports.
“We are extremely distraught and saddened by her passing,” Altheimer told WPBF. “Not just frustrated, but also angry about the way she passed.”
A native of Howell, New Jersey, “Laura had a very bubbly personality, outgoing, intelligent, attractive person, who if you came in contact with her, you really felt very comfortable around her, and you would end up liking her,” he told WBPF.
His daughter, he told the Sun-Sentinel, “was loved by everybody whose life she touched.”
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Randall moved to Florida about 19 years ago, he told the Sun-Sentinel.
She worked for years at a restaurant in Deerfield Beach and had recently gotten a new job at a steakhouse in Boca Raton, the outlet reports.
Randall had recently separated from her husband and had recently moved into the townhouse, Altheimer told WBPF.
Randall’s father and her family were not happy that she was dating Schatz, WBPF reports.
Altheimer described his daughter’s relationship with Schatz as a “bad choice,” the Sun-Sentinel reports.
On the day of the apparent murder-suicide, Schatz’ last Instagram post shows him holding a gun and a bottle of whiskey.
He once posted a picture of a gun with the word #therapy on his Twitter page.
Besides grieving for his daughter, Altheimer is also worried about his grandson, who discovered his mother’s body, the Sun-Sentinel reports.
“On the outside he seems fine,” he told the outlet. “On the inside one needs to really be concerned. He saw a horrific event. It’s got to have an effect.”
He says he plans to have his grandson see a therapist to deal with the trauma of losing his mother and finding her body, he told the Sun-Sentinel.
“It’s difficult. He loved his mother. We’re all rallying around him and all of the children.”