Cops Suspect Murder-Suicide in Killings of Pro Wrestler Chris Benoit and His Family

Published June 26, 2007

| Associated Press

Details of the deaths of pro wrestler Chris Benoit, his wife and their 7-year-old son may seem "a little bizarre" when released to the public, a prosecutor said.

Authorities were investigating the deaths at a secluded Fayette County home as a murder-suicide and were not seeking any suspects outside the home.

Fayette County District Attorney Scott Ballard told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, "The details, when they come out, are going to prove a little bizarre."

Those details may emerge after the completion of autopsies scheduled for Tuesday.

Click here to view video report from MyFoxAtlanta.com.

Investigators believe Benoit, killed his wife and son over the weekend and then himself sometime Monday. The bodies were found Monday afternoon in three different rooms of the house on Green Meadow Lane, in a subdivision off a gravel road about two miles from Whitewater Country Club.

The autopsies were scheduled to be done at the Georgia Bureau of Investigation Crime Lab in DeKalb County.

Ballard told The Associated Press a gun was not used in any of the deaths. But he declined to say how the three died.

"We're pretty sure we know, but we want to confirm it with the crime lab," Ballard said early Tuesday.

Fayette County Coroner C.J. Mowell did not immediately return phone calls. The answering service for his funeral home said he was out of town.

World Wrestling Entertainment said on its Web site that it asked authorities to check on Benoit and his family after being alerted by friends who received "several curious text messages sent by Benoit early Sunday morning."

Click here for full coverage on the WWE Web site.

Pope said the three were found about 2:30 p.m., but he would release no other details about the deaths.

Stamford, Conn.-based WWE also said on its Web site it had further information on the deaths of Benoit, 40; his wife, Nancy, 43; and son, Daniel, but had been asked by authorities not to release it.

Benoit, a native of Canada, was born in Montreal. He was a former world heavyweight champion, Intercontinental champion and held several tag-team titles over his career. He was known by several names including "The Canadian Crippler."

"WWE extends its sincerest thoughts and prayers to the Benoit family's relatives and loved ones in this time of tragedy," the federation said in a statement on its Web site.

Benoit was scheduled to perform at the "Vengeance" pay-per-view event Sunday night in Houston, but was replaced at the last minute because of what announcer Jim Ross called "personal reasons."

Benoit maintained a home in metro Atlanta from the time he wrestled for the defunct World Championship Wrestling.

The WWE canceled its live "Monday Night RAW" card in Corpus Christi, Texas, and USA Network aired a three-hour tribute to Benoit in place of the scheduled wrestling telecast.

Benoit's wife managed several wrestlers and went by the stage name, "Woman," The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

They met when her then-husband drew up a script that had them involved in a relationship as part of an ongoing story line on World Championship Wrestling, the newspaper said.

Benoit has two other children from a prior relationship.

URL

http://www.foxnews.com/story/2007/06/26/cops-suspect-murder-suicide-in-killings-pro-wrestler-chris-benoit-and-his