BROOKSVILLE - Hernando Oaks, a golf community about 5 miles south of Brooksville, is a neighborhood where many residents still feel safe behind unlocked doors.
But on Thursday night, the neighborhood was the site of a "horrific" murder-suicide, according to Sheriff Al Nienhuis.
The sheriff and forensics teams arrived 4419 Caliquen Drive around 11 a.m. on Friday, as a group of reporters and concerned residents gathered for a press conference.
Nienhuis said the deceased suspect was Jamil Etayem, 28. Victims were identified as 23-year-old Roseanna Sanson, and her 9-month-old baby, Carter Sanson.
The family moved into the Hernando Oaks rental home at the end of July from Ohio.
On Thursday, dispatchers received a call from a concerned neighbor asking deputies to perform a welfare check. The neighbor said the couple had been arguing in the afternoon, and as night fell the caller noticed there was no movement and all the lights were off.
"Unfortunately when we got here we found all three of the individuals, including the 9-month-old little boy, deceased," Nienhuis said, adding deputies arrived at 10:14 p.m. Thursday night.
Nienhuis said a knife or knives were used in the murders. The sheriff said it appeared Etayem killed his girlfriend and her baby, who has a different biological father, before then using the knife to kill himself.
"It was a pretty horrific scene," Nienhuis said. "It was shocking even to hardened law enforcement officers, and even our dispatchers are having a little bit of a difficult time with it. Fortunately, we don't see this very often."
Nienhuis said the garage door was open, and it appeared the car was in the process of being packed up.
Nienhuis said his office first became aware of Etayem on Aug. 20, when deputies responded to the residence after calls came in of an "irrational subject" threatening to harm himself. On Aug. 24, Etayem was booked in the Hernando County Jail on domestic battery charges, and was bailed out by a family member the next day. Jail records show Etayem's bond was $500, and conditions of his release included a no contact order with the victim. Etayem's next court date was set for Tuesday.
Nienhuis said it appeared the sheriff's office "followed protocol and then some" when it came to Etayem's August arrest, providing Sanson with domestic violence literature and letting her know when he was released from the jail.
"This really illustrates as much information is out there about domestic violence we can't stress enough to those victims to seek out help," Nienhuis said. "No one wants to move out of a house, especially if young children are involved, but your life may depend on it."
In a statement to the sheriff's office, Sanson wrote that on Aug. 19, Etayem kicked her and her son out of the house in the middle of the night. Because she had nowhere to go, Etayem drove them to homeless shelters, then to the police station. The next morning, Etayem threatened to kill himself, Sanson wrote. Etayem made similar threats later in the week when Sanson told him she was going to move back to Ohio. The report also states Etayem had threatened to kill the baby and himself with a knife.
Gary Sutton, who lives a few homes away, said he arrived home around 9:30 or 10 p.m. on Thursday night, and didn't know anything happened until Friday morning, when he saw news trucks parked in the street.
After the press conference, Hernando Oaks resident Sandra Fitzgerald said she couldn't stop thinking about the baby.
"It's not his fault ... she (Sanson) should have gone home, back to her parents."
Susan Machamer said Hernando Oaks supports the Dawn Center with a charity golf tournament.
"I can't imagine what that house looked like," Machamer said. "Things like this just aren't supposed to happen here."