GRAPEVINE, Texas _ The man police say shot six family members to death in a Grapevine apartment on Christmas before killing himself was dressed as Santa Claus, according to a police spokesman.
Grapevine Police Lt. Todd Dearing said police are still working out the timeline of the massacre, the worst ever in Grapevine. The victims were found next to open gifts near a Christmas tree, police said.
"We don't know if he was with them or he came over later," Dearing said, referring to the man police believe was the killer.
Two handguns were found at the scene. Police say one of the dead, a middle-aged man, is suspected of being responsible for what is apparently a murder-suicide.
Police have said some of the victims were seated on furniture, and others were slumped on the floor.
Two of the women and one man were 18 to 20, police said. The other women were older, and the other men were in their 50s.
All seven were "related either by blood or marriage," Dearing said. Three of the victims lived in the apartment, he said.
The names of the victims were not immediately released.
"We're waiting on the autopsy report and for the medical examiner's office to contact next of kin and confirm identities," Sgt. Robert Eberling said
Late Sunday, bodies were still as they had been found in the apartment while investigators looked for clues.
Police received a 911 call from the Lincoln Vineyards Apartments late Christmas morning, but no one spoke on the other end.
When a patrolman arrived at an apartment near neighbor Claire Comparato's to check things out, he saw bodies slumped around the living room. No one answered the door. When officers forced their way in, they found the victims.