Then there was silence.
Someone was shooting, but not at ducks. Next door in the Temecula cul-de-sac four people lay dead, with a fifth mortally wounded. She died a few hours later. Three of the victims were sprawled on the back patio, which looks down on the Temeku Hills Golf and Country Club. The others were inside on the floor.
Authorities recovered a handgun from the Iron Circle house Monday and said the incident appeared to be murder-suicide. They identified the resident of the home as Jeffrey Blixt, 45, formerly of Desert Hot Springs, who was found dead inside.
A 17-year-old named Matthew Blixt was among the dead. Sheriff's spokesman Dennis Gutierrez confirmed that the boy was Jeffrey Blixt's son.
Authorities have not released the identities of the three other victims -- a 34-year-old woman and two 15-year-old girls who were related but did not live in the home, sheriff's officials said. Blixt was not related to the women and girls, they added.
Authorities are still investigating the motive.
"There was nothing out of the ordinary in the house," Gutierrez said. "The garage door was open and the door between the garage and the house was open. . . . There were no signs of a struggle."
The group were barbecuing before they were shot sometime after 5 p.m., police said.
"Jeff was in good spirits the last time I saw him, which was Friday," said Charles Huckey, 46, who rode motorcycles with Blixt. "He was an all-around nice guy, but he was in financial trouble. He was running a moving company which was in trouble, because no one can sell their house so no one is moving. He was also separated from his wife. But I never saw this coming."
Court records confirm Blixt's difficulties.
He filed for bankruptcy twice, in August 1998 and in October 2005.
Blixt was sued for defaulting on a $4,563 loan from 2002. After being ordered to pay $2,500, Blixt sent a letter to the court requesting more time. He described himself as a truck driver hoping to set up a payment plan after the court made final the division of assets with his former wife.
"I'm in no position to pay the debt in full," Blixt wrote in November 2004. "I have full custody of my children, and I receive no child support at this time. I'm trying my best to get back on my feet financially from this divorce but it takes time and money."
He said he was earning $4,000 a month and taking care of his then 14-year-old son and a 12-year-old daughter. He paid off the debt in 2005.
A client of his company, Executive Movers, sued Blixt in 2005 for failing to complete a moving job from Murrieta, Calif., to Idaho Falls, Idaho. The court ordered him to pay $1,318.
Huckey said Blixt had recently separated from his second wife, who could not be reached for comment.
Neighbors described him as cordial but insular.