Local News

Sheriff identifies suspect, victims in Wake Forest shooting

Authorities said three people--one male and two females--were killed in a shooting at 5901 Clearsprings Drive in Wake Forest around 6 p.m. on Friday.

Posted Updated

WAKE FOREST, N.C. — Authorities said three people—one male and two females—were killed in a shooting at 5907 Clearsprings Drive in Wake Forest around 6 p.m. on Friday.

Police said Jon Sander, 52, of 5917 Clearsprings Drive, was taken into custody and charged with murder.

"The suspect went back to his house and that's the reason we started evacuating," said Wake County Sheriff, Donnie Harrison said "He did not come out to start with."

The sheriff's office identified the victims as Elaine Toby Mazzella, 76, of Raleigh, Sandy Mazzella, 47, of Wake Forest, and Stephanie Ann Mazzella, 43, of Wake Forest.

Sandy Mazzella was the president of Advanced Mowing and Landscaping Inc., and he was business partners with Sander.

Officials said Stephanie Mazzella was an ICU nurse at WakeMed. A hospital spokeswoman said Mazzella began working at WakeMed in 2008.

The shooting may have stemmed from an earlier dispute between the neighbors, officials said. Deputies responded to the homes of the two parties around 9 a.m. on Friday.

Sander was previously charged with communicating threats toward the Mazzellas in February. The 52-year-old threatened to "put them in a box," according to arrest warrants. Sander was due in court April 1 for the charges last month.

According to court documents, Sandy Mazzella was charged with misdemeanor stalking on March 3, with an offense date of Feb. 27; the complaint was filed by Lori Botti, president of Advance Patio and Landscape Inc. Stephanie Mazzella was the vice president of the company.

Botti and Sander were also co-plantiffs in a case suing Sandy Mazzella for "money owed," totaling less than $10,000 on March 2, according to court documents.

​"There were two law enforcement officer vehicles in the driveway, and you notice it because you don't see that much around here," said neighbor Anthony Horne. "This is a really quiet neighborhood, people keep to themselves."

No details were released on how the Friday morning dispute was resolved.

"It sounds like it has been an ongoing feud between the neighbors for a while," Harrison said.

No additional information has been released. Officials said an investigation is ongoing.

1 / 4


Adam Owens, Reporter
Jon Stout, Web Editor

Copyright 2023 by Capitol Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.