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'Total shock': Man, woman dead in apparent murder-suicide in Hamburg

Hamburg police first learned early Wednesday morning that something horrible had happened inside a home on Loring Avenue. A man who identified himself as Kevin called them and said he had shot his girlfriend and was going to shoot himself.

But the tragedy began unfolding 24 hours earlier on Facebook.

“I need to get out of this house,” Danielle Morse wrote at 2:39 a.m. Tuesday.

About 14 hours later, Kevin Kopper posted a picture of himself on the social media site. He was holding a rifle.

Hamburg police believe Morse, 25, was the victim in an apparent murder-suicide early Wednesday morning in an apartment on Loring Avenue, off of Bayview Road.

Her boyfriend, identified by police as Kopper, 31, was named as the person who shot her.

Hamburg police had responded to the call from Kopper about 3:45 a.m., the department said in a news release.

When police arrived at the home, they knocked on the door. That's when they heard a single gunshot.

Neighbors told police the couple had lived in a unit above the attached garage at the three-family residence for about three months.

Police entered the home and found Morse lying on the kitchen floor. She was pronounced dead at the scene.

Kopper was found dead in an adjacent bedroom from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to police. Autopsies were scheduled to be done Wednesday morning.

A woman who answered the phone at Four Aces Bar & Grill, on Lake Shore Road in Hamburg, said Morse worked there as a bartender. She declined further comment.

A Facebook page belonging to Morse, which lists her job as a bartender at Four Aces, contains several photos of her. She identified herself as the mother of three children, ages 3, 5 and 8.

It also reveals some hints of what was unfolding in the period approaching early Wednesday morning.

At 4:51 a.m. Tuesday, about two hours after posting, “I need to get out of this house,” Morse shared a meme of a man pushing a vacuum cleaner over material in flames on the ground. The post included the comment, "When your life is falling apart but you still try your best to fix it."

On Tuesday afternoon, Morse shared a post that read, in part: "I'm slowly learning that even if I react, it won't change anything, it won't make people suddenly love and respect me, it won't magically change their minds. Sometimes it's better to just let things be, let people go, don't fight for closure, don't ask for explanations, don't chase answers and don't expect people to understand where you're coming from."

At 4:54 p.m. Tuesday, Kopper posted the picture of himself with the gun. The photo was posted without any comment.

Leroy Osborn, 66, who has lived in the main unit in the home for three years, said he didn't hear anything happen overnight. He said he realized something was going on only when police arrived.

"This is a total shock to me," he said. "Just yesterday these people were here. I didn't know them very well. A young man and a young woman whose life was snuffed out suddenly."

"This is a tragedy for so many people," Osborn said. "God bless them all."

Lindsay Wert, 34, lives across the street and has lived on Loring her whole life.

"I went to go put my daughter on the bus this morning and I see crime scene tape," she said, "and I’m like, ‘Uh, what?’ I’m shocked."

Another resident of the building where Morse and Kopper shared an apartment said he didn’t know the couple well, having seen them “maybe four times” since they moved in.

“Never once heard them arguing the whole time they were here. Very quiet, kept to themselves,” said the man, who asked not to be identified. “I’m very surprised. I can’t even imagine. I can’t really put my head around it.”

The 24-hour domestic violence hotline in Erie County is 862-HELP (4357).

 

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