Tulsa police identified the family who were found dead inside their east Tulsa home in what investigators said was a triple murder-suicide.
Sudheer Khamitkar, 42; Smita Haval Khamitkar, 38; Arnav Khamitkar, 10; and Arush Khamitkar, 6, were found dead in multiple rooms inside their home in the 18600 block of East 49th Street on Wednesday afternoon, Tulsa Police Homicide Sgt. Dave Walker said.
An investigation revealed that Sudheer Khamitkar shot his wife and two sons before turning the gun on himself, Walker said.
Police have not determined a motive for the killings, he said.
The family, who lived at the home for 10 years, did not have a history of domestic violence nor were they involved in any criminal activity, police said.
Officers responded to the home in the 18600 block of East 49th Street around 3 p.m. to check the welfare of the residents. After finding the back door unlocked, they found the family inside, Capt. Matt McCord said.
Smita Haval Khamitkar's employer had requested that police check on her Wednesday afternoon because she had not shown up for work or called in sick for two days, McCord said.
“Based on the physical evidence inside the house, homicide detectives believe that the adult male, because of the proximity of the firearm to his body, is the person who shot and killed the other individuals,” he said.
McCord said detectives have had difficulty contacting the family’s next-of-kin, who he said were not in Oklahoma.
The bodies were found in different rooms throughout the house, Walker said.
“Right now the proximity of when the (welfare check) call came in and the last time anybody had seen (the family), we believe (their deaths) were as much as two days ago,” McCord said, adding that their trash cart had been emptied Tuesday but had not been pulled up to the garage afterward.
Kendra Pattison, who lives half a block west of the home, said that Wednesday afternoon, “multiple police cars began pulling up to the house, and at one point we saw an officer go out to his car and begin getting latex gloves, so I thought, ‘That’s not good.’ Then it was cop car after cop car after cop car.”
Pattison said another neighbor told her about hearing noises late Monday, but they had attributed it to someone moving the city-issued trash bins.
Although Pattison said she had seen Smita Haval Khamitkar walk around the neighborhood occasionally, she said the family mostly kept to themselves.
Stephen Wiseman, who lived next door to the family for about a decade, said their deaths were “shocking” and that he was stunned upon hearing the news.
“They were wonderful, the most kind (and) gentle people you’d ever meet,” Wiseman said. “Our kids played with them all day on Saturday, and … we saw the kids on Sunday.”
Wiseman’s children were also devastated by the losses of their younger playmates, he said.
“We believe in God, and we tell them God has a plan for people,” Wiseman said of discussing the circumstances of his neighbors’ deaths with his family. “We’re just praying about it, and we’ll work our way through it.”
Detectives have not yet said what they believe prompted Sudheer Khamitkar to kill himself and his family, but they said scenes such as Wednesday’s are difficult for officers.
“It’s a tough deal for anybody to go through,” McCord said.