Skip to main content

Murder-suicide suspected in deaths of 4 found in hotel room

  • Story Highlights
  • Four were found dead Monday in a Sheraton Hotel room in Towson, Maryland
  • The case is being investigated as a murder-suicide, county police said Tuesday
  • Family of 4 ID'd Tuesday as William and Betty Parente, Stephanie, 19, Catherine, 11
  • No motive yet known for slaying of family, from Garden City, N.Y.
  • Next Article in Crime »
Decrease font Decrease font
Enlarge font Enlarge font

(CNN) -- A New York couple and their two daughters found dead in a suburban Baltimore, Maryland, hotel room died in what police believe was a murder-suicide, authorities said Tuesday.

Stephanie Parente, 19, was found dead along with her sister and parents in a Baltimore hotel Monday.

Stephanie Parente, 19, was found dead along with her sister and parents in a Baltimore hotel Monday.

The bodies, found Monday at a Sheraton Hotel in Towson, Maryland, were identified as being those of William Parente, 59; his wife Betty Parente, 58; and their daughters Stephanie, 19, and Catherine, 11, said Baltimore County Police spokesman Cpl. Michael Hill.

The family was from Garden City, New York, Hill said. William Parente was an attorney, he said, and Stephanie Parente was a student at Loyola College in Baltimore.

Beyond saying the incident is believed to be a murder-suicide, Hill would release little additional information pending the completion of autopsies to be conducted Tuesday at the medical examiner's office in Baltimore. Detectives believe they know what occurred, he said, but are awaiting forensic evidence and autopsy results to back up their hypothesis before commenting publicly, Hill said.

"We don't have a motive for why that occurred," he told reporters. "It's all very, very unfortunate."

He said the family frequently traveled to Baltimore to visit Stephanie Parente at school.

As for a timeline for the deaths, Hill said police believe the family was together Sunday morning for breakfast, and they know what time the card key was last used to unlock the room.

He would not give details regarding what, if anything, was found in the room.

The bodies were found Monday after a housekeeper told hotel management about 3 p.m. that the door to the room was locked and there had been no response from inside, county police spokesman Bill Toohey said Monday.

In an e-mail, the Rev. Brian Linnane, president of Loyola College, acknowledged the death of Stephanie Parente.

"This is a moment of unimaginable sorrow for the entire Loyola family," he said in the e-mail, addressed to members of the Loyola community. "The loss of young lives -- particularly under such circumstances -- defies understanding. ... A tragedy such as this reminds us of the mystery and destructive power of evil in our world."

He urged members of the Loyola community to take advantage of grief counseling and support services, and said he would officiate at a special Mass Tuesday night for the Parente family.

College spokeswoman Courtney Jolley told CNN that Stephanie Parente was a sophomore majoring in speech-language pathology with a natural-sciences minor. She was a former member of the women's crew team and coxswain for the men's crew team, Jolley said, and volunteered through the college's Center for Community Service and Justice. She had planned to study abroad in Newcastle, England, next year, Jolley said.

All About Crime

  • E-mail
  • Save
  • Print