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Boy, 14, Kills 6 in His Family; Is Slain by Uncle

United Press International

A 14-year-old boy on Friday shot and killed six members of his family, including his parents and three brothers, then was stabbed to death in a struggle with his wounded uncle, authorities said.

The shootings started at about 5 a.m. in the tiny town of Elkland in dairy farm country about 20 miles northeast of Springfield, a spokeswoman in the Webster County prosecutor’s office said.

Authorities did not speculate on a motive, but neighbors described the family as financially strained.

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The boy, identified as Kirk Buckner, a high school freshman, shot and killed his mother, father and three brothers at their southwest Missouri farm and then drove about five miles to the farm of his uncle and aunt, James Schnick and his wife, authorities said.

The boy then shot and killed his aunt when his uncle suddenly came in the house after rounding up cattle, a sheriff’s department spokesman said.

“As soon as he walked in, he was shot too,” the spokesman said. “I don’t know if he (the boy) was waiting for him or he (the uncle) just came in at the wrong time.”

The shot grazed Schnick’s abdomen, and he then grabbed a knife and stabbed the boy, the spokesman said. The Schnicks’ two children were home at the time of the slayings.

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Victims Identified

The sheriff’s office identified the dead as Kirk’s mother, Julie Buckner; father, Steve Buckner; his three brothers, Tim Buckner, 6; Dennis Buckner, 8, and a 15-month-old brother whose name was not released; and his aunt, Julie Schnick.

After the shootings, the Schnick children, ages 8 and 6, were taken to their grandparents’ house, authorities said.

Schnick was listed in fair and stable condition at St. John’s Regional Health Center in Springfield.

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Audie DeHart, principal at Marshfield Junior High, where Buckner attended the last two years, said: “Nothing in his school background would indicate this type of violence. . . . He didn’t have a violent temper.”


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