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Victims identified in Pittsylvania County murder-suicide

Dane Towler killed Patricia Towler before killing himself, according to authorities

GRETNA, Va. – The Pittsylvania County Sheriff’s Office has identified the man and woman found dead inside a car after what’s believed to be an act of domestic violence on Wednesday.

Dane Towler, 50, shot and killed Patricia Towler, 43, before killing himself inside a car. The Sheriff’s Office did not clarify if the two were related.

They were found at about 11:40 a.m. off of U.S. Highway 40 West, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

Also inside the car was an infant who was unharmed. After being examined for injuries the child was released to a family member.

The investigation continues by interviewing witnesses and known friends and associates of both as to a motive.

Steven Gauldin lives behind the house where the car was found and said he’s not worried about his safety.

“(I) heard the loud noise and looked outside and saw the car up against the house and police officers up there," Gauldin recalled. "We just wondered what was going on, just stood back here and watched.”

Anyone with information helpful to the investigation is asked to contact Capt. Corey Webb at the Pittsylvania County Sheriff’s Office at 434-432-7800 or 434-432-7931.


Original Story

Two people are dead after a shooting in Pittsylvania County on Wednesday, according to the Pittsylvania County Sheriff’s Office.

Both people - who haven’t been identified by authorities yet - were found with gunshot wounds inside a car.

The car was outside of a house on West Gretna Road (Route 40), across the street from the Gretna Dairy Queen and near the Highway 29 interchange.

There was an infant inside the car as well, who wasn’t hurt and is now with family members, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

Witnesses told 10 News that the car somehow went into reverse off of Route 40 and ran into the house. Others who didn’t witness the incident are still just as shocked.

“My employee just called: ‘Somebody got shot at your house.’ I was scared; I said, ‘I’m inside the house.’ What happened has never happened before in this town, and that has made it much more scary for me,” said Lata Patel, who owns a house next to the crime scene.

Authorities say they’ve notified the victims’ immediate family members, but are waiting for a medical examiner’s autopsy to share their identities and cause of death.


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