Husband, Wife and 1 Other Die in Murder-Suicide at NJ Apt Complex

Police officers were spotted conducting an investigation at the West Mount Village apartments

By Brian Thompson and Ida Siegal
|  Tuesday, Oct 9, 2012  |  Updated 8:51 PM EDT
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Three people were fatally shot in a domestic dispute at an apartment complex in Woodland Park, N.J., early Tuesday, authorities said. Ida Siegal reports.

NBC 4 New York

Three people were fatally shot in a domestic dispute at an apartment complex in Woodland Park, N.J., early Tuesday, authorities said. Ida Siegal reports.

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Three people were fatally shot in a domestic dispute at an apartment complex in Woodland Park, N.J., early Tuesday, authorities said.

Maria Rhyne, 48, and Gerry Thomas, 44, were shot and killed by Rhyne's estranged husband Stephen Rhyne, 48, before he turned the gun on himself, prosecutors said.

Stephen Rhyne had gone to Thomas' apartment on Washington Drive in Woodland Park at about 6:15 a.m. and shot his wife numerous times outside an apartment complex door, prosecutors said. He then shot Thomas, who was in his SUV and attempting to leave the area. 

Thomas hit several parked cars when he was shot. 

Stephen Rhyne then shot and killed himself, authorities said.

Maria Rhyne had an active restraining order against her husband, who lived in Bergenfield, the prosecutor's office said. The two had been separated for about a year, and both were dating other people. 

It wasn't immediately clear if Thomas was Maria Rhyne's boyfriend.

One neighbor said she was in bed at about 5:30 a.m. when she heard what sounded like several gunshots firing off in rapid succession. Then she heard a woman scream, followed by another gunshot, the unidentified neighbor said.

Investigation is ongoing, prosecutors said. 

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