Detroit • Authorities on Monday released the identities of two women who investigators say were shot to death the day before at a Detroit seniors’ home.
The victims in Sunday’s shooting were Deborah Socia, 59, and Maria Gonzalez, 64. Socia was shot in the head and Gonzalez was shot several times, Wayne County Medical Examiner’s office spokeswoman Mary Mazur said.
Police say both women were friends of a woman who had broken off a relationship with the alleged gunman, whose name hasn’t been released. The 65-year-old man has been arrested but not charged.
He surrendered to police Sunday evening at the center on the city’s southwest side, where the man and the women killed were residents. A woman who answered the phone there Monday morning said nobody was available to comment.
The shooting happened after the man had an argument with his girlfriend that ended their relationship, police said in a news release. They said the man went to his apartment at the Pablo Davis Elder Living Center, got a rifle and started looking for two residents he believed to be responsible for breaking him and the girlfriend up.
Police say the man shot Socia as she sat on a bench outside the apartment building, then went inside and shot Gonzalez.
“I didn’t see the rifle until he got right on top of us,” Paul Fratangelo, who said he witnessed the shooting, told The Detroit News. “I said, ‘Oh, my God ...’ He said ‘Get on the ground and start praying.’
“It was the grace of God that he didn’t shoot me. I really thought he was going to shoot me. I thought it was over. Instead, he shot both my friends.”
It’s not clear how many people live at the senior center. Police say the building has about 80 apartment units.