San Francisco Bay Area Violent Crime

Fremont Police Believe Deaths of Man and Woman Were a Murder-Suicide

Fremont police said today that they believe the shooting deaths of a man and a woman and who were found inside a home in the city’s Niles District on Saturday were a murder-suicide.

The Alameda County coroner’s bureau identified the people who were found in the home in the 37800 block of Third Street near Niles Community Park shortly after 5 p.m. on Saturday as Steven Floyd Howard, 56, and Holly Lynn Dreyer, 49. A dog was also found shot to death in the home, police said.

A family member called police earlier in the day because the person hadn’t heard from their relatives in two days, according to police. Officers knocked on the door but no one answered. When officers looked through a window they believed they saw a dead woman and dead dog. Police called firefighters who forced their way into the home where they indeed found a dead woman, a dead dog and a dead man.

All appeared to have been dead for more than a day. A gun was found close to Howard, police said. The decision to investigate the deaths as a murder-suicide is based on the evidence at the scene and statements by family members, neighbors and other people close to the deceased, police said.

An investigation by the coroner will determine the official cause of the deaths, according to police.

Fremont police said anyone with information about the case should call Detective Steven Nordeth at (510) 790-6900.

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