Custody dispute may have been motive in downstate killings

Investigators say a custody dispute may have been the motive behind the murders of five family members last month in downstate Manchester.

State police say Rick Odell Smith was involved in a custody fight with the mother of his daughter, and thought her family was interfering.

Authorities say  Smith went to the family’s home and shot a pregnant woman, her grandmother, her boyfriend … and their two small children.

Smith died in a gun battle with police a short time later.

His child and her mother were not home at the time of the shooting.


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