A man said to be a loving but despondent father ended three lives with three bullets at a shabby Reseda house over the weekend, Los Angeles police said Monday.
Michael Wolf, 39, killed his son, Kevin, 9, and his daughter, Dana, 11, on Saturday night, homicide Detective Phil Quartararo said. He then turned the revolver on himself. The family had last been seen alive Saturday afternoon by Wolf’s brother at a baseball game in a nearby park, police said.
The bodies were discovered about 11 a.m. Monday after Michael Wolf’s mother became concerned because he had not shown up for work at the family’s business in Los Angeles, police said. A neighbor said Wolf was a carpet layer, but police would not confirm that.
Quartararo said Wolf left a suicide note in the home in the 17700 block of Vanowen Street.
Family members told police that “there was no warning or anything about him being depressed or anything,” Quartararo said.
Detective Duane Burris said the note indicated that Wolf was struggling with “normal family difficulties” and financial problems. He declined to be more specific.
Wolf was divorced from Georgia Wolf, the children’s mother, in 1984 and won custody of the children in 1985. Georgia Wolf showed up Monday at the house, which is in need of paint and repairs, but refused to talk to reporters, saying, “I’m sure you can appreciate what it’s like to lose two children.”
The owner of a nearby carpeting business, who asked not to be identified, said Wolf bought linoleum from him in 1985, a sofa from him in 1986 and carpeting about 18 months ago. He paid at least one of the bills in installments.
Wolf came into the business at least weekly to say hello. “Every time he was here, all he talked about was his kids,” said the business’s owner. “He was a very lonely person.”
Dora Becerra, whose daughter attended Bertrand Avenue Elementary School last year and Mulholland Junior High School this year with Dana Wolf, said Wolf “seemed to be involved in his kids’ activities.” Her daughter, Rachel Becerra, said Dana was a good student who attended ballet classes.
Quartararo said police are trying to locate a live-in housekeeper who stayed at the small house during the week. She was scheduled to arrive for work Monday morning but had not been seen.
Quartararo also said the Wolfs’ three dogs were missing.