"TOWN OF MAZOMANIE — A 17-year-old boy, apparently upset over a breakup two weeks ago, took a handgun to his ex-girlfriend’s trailer home Monday night and killed the girl’s teen sister and another person, authorities said Tuesday.
Dean M. Sutcliffe was arrested Monday night at the scene of the shooting, said Dane County Sheriff Dave Mahoney. Investigators are recommending that prosecutors charge Sutcliffe with two counts of first-degree intentional homicide.
Ariyl Brady, 16, and her mother’s boyfriend, Chris Schwichtenberg, a 39-year-old father of two boys, were fatally shot, said Schwichtenberg’s mother, Joyce Zimdars.
Sutcliffe’s ex-girlfriend, Amanda Brady, 15, wasn’t at the home in the Rio Valley Estates trailer park at the time of the shooting, said her father, Justin Brady, of Deerfield.
'Amanda broke up with him and he took it out on my son and Ariyl,' Zimdars said of Sutcliffe.
Zimdars described a shooting scene that began with a surprise knock at the door from Sutcliffe in the quiet of the night.
'Chris went to (open) the door and from what I understand the kid just started shooting,' Zimdars said.
Deputies were called to the mobile home park at 10359 Highway Y, four miles north of Mazomanie, around 11:30 p.m. on Monday and found the two victims suffering from gunshot wounds that proved fatal, Mahoney said.
They also found Sutcliffe, Mahoney said.
'He was there and immediately surrendered to deputies,' Mahoney said.
Mary Brady, Schwichtenberg’s girlfriend and Ariyl and Amanda Brady’s mother, shared the trailer home with Schwichtenberg. Mary Brady was there at the time of the shooting, and ran to warn Schwichtenberg’s two teenage sons to stay in their room before she called 911, Zimdars said.
They were all unharmed, Mahoney said.
Sutcliffe and both Brady sisters were students at Wisconsin Heights High School, although according to Sutcliffe’s Facebook page he left the school last month and enrolled in the Wisconsin Challenge Academy, a program for at-risk youth.
Counselors were on hand at the high school to provide support to students and staff there, said Mark Elworthy, superintendent of the Wisconsin Heights School District.
'We have people who are available and dedicated for the next couple of days for that purpose,' Elworthy said.
Schwichtenberg raised his boys alone after their mother died about 10 years ago, Zimdars said, and was the manager of the mobile home park since 2002. Two of his sisters, Julie and Paula, also live at the trailer park, Zimdars added.
'He was my only son. Everybody around here loved him,' said a somber Zimdars, 61, of Madison, who was speaking from Paula’s home Tuesday morning prior to meeting with authorities. Zimdars said she was feeling numb ever since receiving the news just after midnight that her son was killed.
'Chris did everything he could for everybody,' said Zimdars.
Residents of the trailer park described Schwichtenberg as an exceptional manager who took the time to make sure everybody’s needs were met. He was especially helpful to the many elderly residents who lived there, said James Eveland, 66.
'He plowed the snow for me when I was sick. He took care of things for me,' Eveland said. 'He’d do anything for everybody.'
Another resident, Travis Spencer, 32, said Ariyl Brady always came to the aid of his young daughter when she was picked on by older kids on the bus to school. He added that Schwichtenberg earned the residents’ respect as a good father to his boys.
'It makes no sense why somebody would do something like what happened to Chris and (Ariyl),' Spencer said. 'Everybody goes through hard times. You just have to deal with it.'
Sutcliffe’s Facebook page indicates that he and Amanda Brady started dating last September.
Mahoney said deputies had multiple interactions with Sutcliffe because of what the sheriff called 'family dynamics and school attendance issues.'
In an October Facebook post, Sutcliffe announced his plan to start attending the Challenge Academy, and thanked two Dane County deputies that he said helped 'steer me in the right direction.'
The contact with law enforcement was not related to Sutcliffe’s relationship with his ex-girlfriend, Mahoney said.
Officials with Domestic Abuse Intervention Services said the shooting shows that domestic violence can be as serious a problem in teen relationships as it is in adult ones, and that 1.5 million high school students experience physical abuse each year.
'As a community we need to support teens in building healthy relationships and also work to address the root causes of domestic violence with youth,' said Shannon Barry, the Madison group’s executive director."
Read the article in the Wisconsin State Journal
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