BARDWELL — A woman and two men were murdered early Sunday morning in the small Ellis County town of Bardwell, and a suspect is in custody.
Deputies were summoned to a disturbance at a residence in the 400 block of Commerce Street around 12:20 a.m. They found a man and a woman dead on the floor of the kitchen and another man mortally wounded in a hallway.
That person later died at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas.
Family members told News 8 the dead were Gladys Goff and her two sons, Ray and Erick.
"We are devastated. You don't have to go to the movies to find monsters and demons. They are right here on Earth with us," said Jeff Goff, the brother's cousin.
There were as many as 20 people at the home at the time of the incident celebrating a family birthday.
Jeff Goff said Roberto Costilla, the boyfriend of one of the family's sisters, was unwelcome at the party. After being asked to leave, he soon returned — armed with a pistol, a knife and intentions.
"He just lost it," Goff said.
Costilla was later spotted by Department of Public Safety troopers.
"There was a pursuit involved with our deputies, and our deputies took him down in a nearby city," said Ellis County Sheriff's Office spokesman Joe Fitzgerald.
The 27-year-old was arrested without incident about 13 miles from the crime scene in Italy, Texas.
Goff said the suspect's girlfriend and their six-year-old child were able to flee to a nearby neighbor's house.
"She pleaded with him not to shoot her, and he didn't," Goff said.
A growing number of family members and friends stopped by to show their solidarity with the grieving family on Sunday afternoon and into the evening.
Bardwell is located six miles southwest of Ennis.