St. George police investigating an apparent murder-suicide; neighbors say they’re shocked

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St. George police are investigating an apparent murder-suicide near the River Road area after a brother, sister, and their dog were found dead in the apartment they shared. 

Authorities said they were called for a welfare check in the Fountain Heights community in St. George and found Shandra Lee Brownstein, 67, and Stanley Thomas McCausland, 68, dead from shotgun wounds. 

St. George police officer Tiffany Atkin said their bodies were found on May 9 and they had been dead for up to a week. 

“It’s hard to know exactly what happened because there was no note left and no explanation as to what lead up to this,” Atkin said. 

Atkin added that investigators believe McCausland first shot his sister and her dog with a shotgun in her bedroom, before heading to his bedroom and shooting himself. 

Ruth and Kaleb Kaplin lived directly below the siblings and described them as kind and friendly. 

“I’d never seen anything out of the ordinary with them,” Ruth Kaplin said. “They would always be the first to start a conversation and say hello.” 

Kaplin added that most of their neighbors were out of town at the time, and police confirmed that no shots were reported. 

“It’s motivated me to be a better neighbor and try to learn a little bit more about people. You never know what you can say to affect people and help them out,” she added. 

At the time of the siblings’ deaths, St. George police said they were at risk of being evicted from their apartment. 

Authorities said they are unaware of any mental health issues either of the siblings faced but added that Brownstein was considering moving into a care facility based on her physical health issues. 

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