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Police: Fayetteville veteran killed two neighbors

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Home of Fayetteville couple shot Saturday night Home of Fayetteville couple shot Saturday night
Allen Thomas. source: Facebook Allen Thomas. source: Facebook
FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. -

Fayetteville police are investigating what appears to be a double murder and suicide.
It happened around 8:14 Saturday night on Potters Court, which is in a community off Cliffdale Road.

Police say when they arrived they found two victims and a dog had been shot.  Ann Awaldt, 68, was dead at the scene. Her husband, Todd Awaldt, 48, died later at Cape Fear Valley Medical Center, according to police.

Police said the gunman, 29-year-old Allen Thomas, was retired from the military. Information posted on Facebook shows Thomas was in the 82nd Airborne Division from September 2004 to late August 2012. Facebook also showed Thomas was originally from the Rockville, Md., area.

Police said they do not believe Thomas knew the Awaldts. However, their homes are very close to each other. Thomas's home is on Gaza Court. Only a small wooded area is between Thomas's back yard and the cul-de-sac where the Awaldt's lived.

On Monday, Cumberland County Schools confirmed Todd Awaldt had been a maintenance worker for the school system. He had worked for the system for nearly 12 years, spokeswoman Patricia Hollingsworth said.

On Sunday, witnesses to the Saturday shooting said they heard several shots come from inside the home.

"All of a sudden the garage door flys open, a guy runs outside, turns around goes back inside the house for less than a minute then comes back outside running," said Robert Casper, a neighbor.

Casper said Thomas then shot at another neighbor, who shot back at Thomas.

"I was totally afraid for everybody because [Thomas] was firing into an open, public area and so I ran in the house and called 911," said Casper.

He said Thomas ran off.

Officers said they later found him laying in a nearby yard on Christina Circle near Hoke Loop Rd. Police say he shot himself and died.

Jonathan Rodriguez

Jonathan Rodriguez is an investigative reporter and member of the WNCN Investigates team. His storytelling specialty is connecting the dots to get to the truth, with a goal of delivering results for our community. If you have something you’d like WNCN to investigate, contact Jonathan.

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Brandon Herring

Brandon is a North Carolina native and UNC alum who lives in Fayetteville, and covers Cumberland County and the Sandhills. Returning to North Carolina to work as a journalist is a dream come true for Brandon. More>>

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