Symmes Township Murder Suicide - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Symmes Township Murder Suicide

Neighbors say they saw the warning signs. But what happened Sunday morning still shocked them.

The Hamilton County Sheriff's Department says 54-year-old Benton French Speece Jr. shot his estranged wife, Bonnie, outside her Symmes Township condo. At least one neighbor saw the murder, and several others heard it.

Investigators say Speece fled the scene and drove a mile to his apartment, where he shot and killed himself.

Neighbors say Speece, who lived in their neighborhood for years before he and Bonnie were separated less than a year ago, was abusive and controlling. They say he threatened some of the people on their street. She had a restraining order against him.

And court records show he threatened Bonnie with a gun just two weeks ago. In a written affidavit, Bonnie writes that Speece "came into [her] condo carrying a Dillards bag. He pulled a gun from the bag and pointed it at [her]. He told [her] he was going to kill [her] then himself."

Several neighbors say the murder should've been prevented. One friend said Bonnie needed help and she didn't get it.

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