Ex-football player Antonio Armstrong and his wife, Dawn, were shot and killed in the bedroom of their Houston home on Friday, allegedly by their 16-year-old son, the Houston Chronicle reports. Police found Dawn Armstrong dead at the scene. Her husband died hours later at a Houston hospital. Antonio and Dawn Armstrong were both 42 years old.
Friends and family expressed surprise over the tragedy on Friday. Several said the Armstrongs were great parents to their three children, including the 16-year-old alleged shooter. The couple also had a 20-year-old son and a younger daughter, both of whom were reportedly home during the shooting, but unharmed.
"There was nothing left out. There was no neglect or anything, nothing that could even possibly justify the situation," Dawn Armstrong's cousin, Vaun Lee, told Houston's ABC 13. "This makes no sense. No sense."
The crime happened in the early morning hours on Friday, according to police, who arrived on the scene after 1:30 a.m. According to ABC 13, the call to 911 allegedly came from the 16-year-old shooter; the Houston Chronicle reports police arrived at the scene after reports of gunshots.
Investigators reportedly found a note that read "I've been watching you" next to the gun allegedly used in the crime, according to ABC 13, but investigators are still searching for a motive.
Speaking to the media, investigators appeared to be as surprised by the crime as friends and family.
"This was an outstanding family. The male of the family was an absolute hard working breadwinner," Houston police homicide Investigator Jimmy Dodson said (via Houston's NBC 2). "He was an associate pastor in the area church. He's a great guy. The mother was apparently a great mother, according to family members. Like I said, it was kind of the all-American family."
Police have charged the 16-year-old boy with murder and he remains in police custody as a juvenile.
The Armstrongs were known as active members of their community, running a popular gym called First Class Training in the nearby town of Bellaire. Antonio Armstrong, who rose to fame as an all-American linebacker at Texas A&M before playing briefly for the Miami Dolphins, had built up a reputation for being a strong advocate for health and fitness.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with Antonio Armstrong and his family, his old teammates and the entire Aggie family," Texas A&M Coach Kevin Sumlin said in a statement on Friday (via NBC 2). "Our strength coach Larry Jackson was a teammate of Antonio's and thought the world of him. This is a terrible tragedy and our hearts our broken."
"Antonio was a special young man," said former Aggies Coach R.C. Slocum, from whom Armstrong played. "He was an All-American and an outstanding player, but he was an even better person. He was such a positive influence on his teammates. He always had a big smile and was a joy to coach."