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Arizona man charged in Christmas Day murder of estranged wife, children

Police on Tuesday identified the suspect as Anthony Milan Ross.

(Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office)

An Arizona man was charged Tuesday in the first day of christmas the death of his estranged wife and their two children, authorities said.

Anthony Milan Ross, 45, was charged with three counts of first-degree murder as well as multiple counts of aggravated assault, and violence against a police officer. He was being held without bail, police said.

Authorities on Monday responded to a report of gunfire at a Phoenix apartment complex where the shooting had taken place.

Police found the body of Ross’ estranged wife outside the apartment and later found the bodies of their 11-year-old son, Nigel Ross, and their 10-month-old daughter Anora Ross in the apartment.

Ross had barricaded himself in the apartment and after a brief shootout with the police, was taken into custody. Police said Ross had indicated to the officers that he had killed two children.

The Phoenix police Sgt. Jonathan Howard said an officer was injured by shrapnel during the firefight with the man. Ross was not injured, Howard said.

The researchers said they believe this was a domestic violence incident, according to Fox 10 Phoenix.

“I’ve never seen anything like this,” Kristen Alexander, a neighbor, told Fox 10 Phoenix. “All of our neighbors seem normal and nice and we have never had a problem with anyone here.”

AZFamily.com, quoting court documents, reported that Ross was being held without bail, because the murders were considered a capital crime. The prosecutors could ask for the death penalty.

Ross is set for a preliminary hearing on Jan. 5.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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