NEW STANTON, Pa. — A community in Pennsylvania is searching for answers after a 14-year-old boy allegedly shot and killed his mother and 8-year-old brother on Wednesday morning.
Local pastors spoke to a community still reeling.
“It’s fine to ask why. In fact, asking why is cathartic. It heals,” said Pastor Robert Thoma with the First Assembly of God.
Hundreds of candles seemed to reflect the night sky over New Stanton, Pa. at the vigil held days after the tragedy occurred.
Dozens gathered to remember Caleb and Dana Remaley and begin the healing process one day after the mother and son were shot to death in their home.
“We just don’t understand. For people who knew the family, they’re a good family. They’re hard-working. They give so much back to the community,” one local resident said.
The tragic deaths would be hard enough to take, but what makes the incident so hard to accept is that it was young Jacob who allegedly pulled the trigger, killing his mother and little brother as they were sound asleep.
“[Dana] had a big personality,” a neighbor said. “If you called her in the middle of the night that you needed Tylenol, she would run to the store and buy it for you. We always went to Kennywood together for the summer school picnic. Caleb was the little brother tagging along irritating the older boys.”
Investigators say the 14-year-old told them he would’ve murdered his father had he been home too.
In another unsettling turn of events, state police said Jacob was the one who called 911 asking for help, just moments after the incident happened.
A neighbor eventually got him to drop the gun in the front yard.
As the investigation continues, one thing is for sure: the community is feeling for the family, especially the father David, who lost his wife and one son, and now has another in police custody.
Authorities say the investigation is ongoing, and a motive has not been determined.
Jacob will be moved to a juvenile detention center following his arraignment.