Local News

Two calls reveal how Fayetteville family was found

Posted November 5, 2009 11:16 a.m. EST
Updated November 6, 2009 10:09 a.m. EST

— Fayetteville police on Thursday released two 911 calls made from the home where a family died Monday night.

When the operator answered the first call, at 6:38 p.m., no one responded. The sounds of someone in distress and what could be a gunshot are audible.

The 911 call center received more than 46,000 "abandoned calls" in a year, police spokeswoman Theresa Chance said. The policy is for the operator to attempt to re-dial the incoming number and, if the call comes from a landline phone, pinpoint a location.

If this call was made from a cell phone without a Global Positioning System, Chance said, the call's origin could only be narrowed down to the nearest cell tower.

More than an hour later, a second call came in.

In it, a man identifies himself and says he has arrived at the home of his daughter. "We've got what appears to be ... murder-suicide," he says. In the background, there is the sound of knocking and a woman says, "I knew it. I knew it."

Police said William "Billy" Maxwell Jr., 47, killed his family at 314 West Park Drive. The victims included his wife, Kathryn Maxwell, 43, daughter Connor Maxwell, 17, and son Cameron Maxwell, 15.

The caller tells the emergency operator that he can see through the door that something is very wrong. "We've been trying to contact our daughter," he says.

Chance said, "The (in-laws) were able to look right through the front window and see there were deceased bodies."

When officers arrived, they looked through the window and saw Kathryn Maxwell's body, Chance said. They entered the house and found Billy Maxwell Jr. and his son. They found his daughter's body further inside the home.

Community in shock

The family attended Snyder Memorial Baptist Church. Friends said the siblings were involved in the youth ministry and the youth choir, and their father was a deacon.

Business associates and friends said Wednesday there was nothing to suggest that Billy Maxwell might become violent.

“He was obviously under some sort of strain," Billy Maxwell's business partner, George Rose, said.

“That guy loved his family. He wouldn’t have done anything, if he was thinking right, to hurt his family,” Rose said.

Funeral services for the Maxwell family will be held on Friday at 1 p.m. at Snyder Memorial Baptist Church, 701 Westmont Drive in Fayetteville.