A Stowe man had no idea when he returned to his home Wednesday afternoon that he had stumbled upon the scene of a homicide and a possible attempted suicide, police said.
Allegheny County police Lt. Andrew Schurman said police and firefighters were called to 1513 Broadway Ave. around 2:30 p.m. after a man called 911 to say he had found his roommate, Andrew Sheets, 25, unconscious in the first-floor kitchen and smelled gas in the house.
The man left the home and when police entered they found 21-year-old Elizabeth Cannon, Mr. Sheets' girlfriend and roommate, shot to death in a second-floor bedroom.
Medics took Mr. Sheets to an undisclosed hospital and Lt. Schurman said he was in stable condition Wednesday night and was expected to survive.
He said there was no evidence to suggest that Ms. Cannon's death was a suicide and there were no signs of forced entry at the home. The roommate who discovered Mr. Sheets was identified by family members as Dan Mahaffey. He provided a statement to police and was not considered a suspect, police said.
No arrests had been made late Wednesday night.
Investigators were also working to rule out the possibility that an outside party was involved in the killing.
Lt. Schurman declined to release a motive in the killing.
Emotional family members and curious neighbors gathered around the two-story house trying to learn more about how the couple's five-year relationship ended fatally.
A relative of Mr. Sheets, a 2005 graduate of Montour High School, said the family would stand by and support him regardless of what the investigation reveals and apologized for what might have happened.
Ms. Cannon's family declined to comment.
Gary Gideon, 45, grew up next door and his mother continued to live there until she passed away in April. He said people were always coming and going from the house, but spoke favorably of Mr. Sheets, who helped clear his mother's carport in the winter.
"They're very quiet," said Mr. Gideon, a minister. "You wouldn't expect something like this to happen."
At the Rite Aid store in the McKees Rocks Plaza where Ms. Cannon worked, a poster hung on the window Wednesday night with pictures of the Sto-Rox High School graduate and the words "rest in peace."
"You will be missed by everyone," wrote one co-worker. Another said he would see her in heaven.