Police say that a man who was stalking a woman online shot and killed her and her husband in their home in Redmond, Washington. The man was trying to get a protection order served on the woman.
Police in Redmond say that Ramin Khodakaramrezaei, 38, also killed himself early Friday morning at the couple’s home after breaking in through a bedroom window. The woman’s mother was home when the shots were fired, but she was not hurt.
Before the murders, the woman had filed a protection order against the suspect earlier this month. However, Khodakaramrezaei, who is from Texas and worked as a truck driver, could not be found, said Redmond Police Chief Darrell Lowe at a news conference on Friday.
“This is the absolute worst outcome for a stalking case,” Lowe said.
Khodakaramrezaei kept in touch with the stalking victim and her husband, whose names have not been made public, after they met online through a chat app, the victim told police.
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Police said in a statement that Khodakaramrezaei used the app to listen to the woman’s podcasts and then started talking to her. The woman and the suspect became friends, but when things got worse, the woman got a court order telling him not to talk to her again.
“In one of the reports, she reported over 100 contacts in a single day,” Lowe said. “There were instances where the individual did show up at the (home) previously bearing gifts.”
Police say that when they got to the scene on Friday, the woman and her husband were both dead from gunshot wounds. Inside the house, they also found Khodakaramrezaei dead.
Lowe said that even though a protective order was issued in this case, the person who was being stalked should still be careful and work closely with local authorities to report any violations. He also said that these orders shouldn’t be seen as a shield against suspects.
“I do not want to create a false sense of security just because a restraining order or a protective order is obtained,” Lowe said. “A restraining order is simply a piece of paper that allows officers to take enforcement actions should a suspect violate the court order, but a piece of paper does not protect a person when someone is intent on causing them harm.”