Search warrants: Victim told deputy she was a hostage before Pittsylvania County murder-suicide

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PITTSYLVANIA COUNTY, Va. (WFXR) — The victim in last week’s murder-suicide near Gretna told a sheriff’s deputy she was a hostage before she was shot in front of the deputy, search warrants reveal.

A Pittsylvania County Sheriff’s Office deputy was at the Dairy Queen in Gretna when Patrica Harris Towler, 43, told the deputy she was a hostage. Towler was in a vehicle when she spoke with the deputy.

“Upon saying that, a male in the vehicle produced a weapon and shot the female then shot himself,” the warrant said, adding that an infant was removed from the car and removed by other deputies on the scene. The man, Dane Clarke Towler, 50, and Patricia Towler both died at the scene.

The vehicle where the Towlers were found knocked down a sign and crashed into a home.

A Smith & Wesson 357 revolver was found in the car, along with $125.

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