Originally published December 21, 2011 at 6:16 p.m., updated December 22, 2011 at 7:22 a.m.
Two young children were orphans today after their father killed his wife and then himself even as police officers were outside the family's home in Serra Mesa, authorities said.
A SWAT team stormed inside the Navy family's Serra Mesa home Wednesday to end a three-hour standoff with a domestic-shooting suspect, finding a man and woman dead in an apparent case of murder-suicide.
Along with the couple's bodies, the heavily armed and armored officers found an unharmed toddler in the house in the 3300 block of Wainright Lane when they made entry about 3:30 p.m., according to San Diego police.
The discovery came about three hours after a man made an emergency call to report that he had shot his wife in their military-housing residence about a half-mile south of Montgomery Field airport. The caller told police he also intended to kill himself, SDPD public affairs Lt. Andra Brown said.
The first officer to arrive at the address saw a woman apparently trying to leave the home and being pulled back inside by a man, Assistant Police Chief Boyd Long told reporters.
Officers evacuated nearby houses and called in special weapons and tactics personnel to surround the residence and prepare to forcibly enter it, if necessary, Brown said.
Police were able to determine that one of the couple's children, an 18-month-old boy, was inside with them, according to Brown. A second youngster, a girl of about 5, was at school, she said.
The names of the deceased man and woman, both of whom were in the Navy, were withheld pending notification of their families.
Emergency medical technicians gave the child who had been inside the couple's home during the standoff a precautionary evaluation to make sure he was uninjured.
"That 18-month-old was taken to a waiting paramedic rig and is being treated here at the scene,'' the assistant police chief said. "We do have a family member, an extended-family member, here, and that child will likely go to that (relative's custody)."