A Dillard man shot and killed his live-in girlfriend before shooting himself Sunday evening, according to the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office.

At approximately 5:10 p.m., emergency dispatchers received information that a woman had been shot in the 100 block of First Street in Dillard. The dispatchers attempted to get additional information from the man who called; he eventually told the dispatcher to “have a good one,” which was followed by the sound of a gunshot.

When deputies from the sheriff’s office responded to the home, they heard a final gunshot from inside.

Deputies entered the residence and found 88-year-old Thomas Higginbothom with a self-inflicted gunshot wound and a weapon in his lap, according to a press release.

Deputies also located a 63-year-old woman, identified as Linda Free, also of Dillard, in another room with a gunshot wound.

Free was pronounced deceased at the scene. Higginbothom was taken to CHI Mercy Medical Center by ambulance where he remains in critical condition but is not expected to survive.

Detectives are investigating the incident as an apparent murder-suicide, said Brad O’Dell, a spokesperson for the sheriff’s office.

Ian Campbell can be reached at ian@nrtoday.com or 541-957-4209. Or follow him on Twitter @MrCampbell17.

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