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11 a.m. update: Victims named in possible Atwater murder-suicide

11:00 a.m.: The two people who were killed in a possible murder-suicide have been identified as Pedro Serna, 47, and Delores Serna, 43, according to the Merced County Sheriff's Department.


ATWATER -- Two people are dead following a Friday shooting that Atwater police believe could be a murder-suicide.

Police released only a sliver of details late Sunday and haven't said the identity or age of either person, pending notification of family or next of kin.

The shooting was reported at 11:35 p.m. at the Castleview Apartments in the 1600 block of Bellevue Road, according to Asst. Chief Frank Pietro.

Police responded to the scene regarding a domestic dispute and found the door to the apartment ajar. Inside, Pietro said officers saw a female victim lying in a pool of blood. He said a male victim was also found inside the apartment.

On Sunday, a green sticker marked "coroner's seal" was on the door outside the second floor apartment, just above a silver helium "Happy Mother's Day" balloon and an assortment of flowers.

Neighbors who spoke to the Sun-Star this weekend reported hearing at least one gunshot, followed by a woman screaming and more gunshots.

One woman who asked to remain anonymous said the female victim was a friendly person who had many grandchildren. "Everybody knew her," she said. "She got along with everyone over here."

Anyone with information about the shooting should call detectives at the Atwater Police Department at (209) 357-6396. Calls are kept confidential and you can remain anonymous.

Reporter Victor A. Patton can be reached at (209) 385-2431 or vpatton@mercedsun-star.com.

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