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Staff reports /The Week
(Published June 10, 2007, 12:13 p.m.)
Responding to a report of shots fired Saturday night, Delavan police discovered six people dead, and a toddler critically injured.
Police responded to a report of shots fired at 10:36 p.m. Saturday, Chief Tim O'Neill said. The home is at 309 S. Second St., in Delavan.
When asked after an 11:45 a.m. press conference if Delavan residents should be concerned, O'Neill said, "We are advising the community that the community is safe."
He said the investigation has been turned over to the Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation.
State agents and local police were canvassing the neighborhood this morning.
"We want to make sure there is no stone unturned because we want to make sure this is done properly," O'Neill said.
O'Neill declined to release names of the victims.
Walworth County Coroner John Griebel still is trying to contact the victims' next of kin. He expected to release names later today or Monday.
Family and friends identified some of the victims:
-- Kay Macara of rural Delavan confirmed her 19-year-old daughter, Vanessa Iverson, was one of the victims. Iverson had a 5-year-old daughter and a 7-month-old son, and lived with her mother, she said.
"My child," Macara said through tears. "I want answers."
Duane Iverson, Vanessa's brother, said Vanessa had been visiting the house and did not live there. Duane Iverson declined further comment.
Sarah Iverson, Vanessa's sister-in-law, said Vanessa had been at the home visiting friends from high school. She said Vanessa graduated from New Chance High School in Elkhorn but earlier had attended Delavan-Darien High School.
-- Marco Pastrana said his cousin Ambrocio Analco, 22, Delavan, was among those killed along with Analco's twin boys, who were 2 or 3 months old. Analco's 2-year-old daughter, Jasmine, was in serious condition at University Hospital in Madison.
Pastrana said Analco was taking his three children back to the home of their mother, Nicole, Saturday night.
Pastrana said he did not know Nicole's last name, but Walworth County Court online records show a 2005 child support case involving Argenis Analco and Nicole Mcaffee.
A family friend said Nicole Mcaffee was among those killed.
Sarah Iverson said that in the house at the time of the shooting were a friend of Vanessa Iverson, the friend's husband, sister and brother-in-law and three children, including the 2-year-old and a set of twins.
The 2-year-old girl was found in a van in the driveway and was taken to a hospital in Rockford, Ill., on Saturday night, where she was in critical condition, hospital officials said.
Rockford Memorial Hospital officials said the child was then transferred by helicopter to University Hospital in Madison, where she was listed in serious condition Sunday morning.
Police cordoned off a two-block area around the crime scene Sunday morning as neighbors gathered on the sidewalks to watch the investigation unfold just three blocks from the police station. A small dog that a neighbor said belonged to the people who lived in the house, sat in the front yard as police removed the bodies.
The rental unit is owned by Duane Brellenthin, according to tax records.
Jesus Valadez, 27, who lives in a house next to where the shooting occurred, said he did not hear gunshots last night.
"It's kind of scary," he said. "Exciting, don't get me wrong. Better than watching TV."
He said police told him to stay inside and keep doors locked. But he was outside watching the scene this morning.
James Brandenburg, 57, of Delavan dropped to his knees as police wheeled out bodies at mid-morning and threw his arms to the sky. He had spent several minutes earlier, also on his knees, praying.
"It's tragic. It's getting worse all the time," he said. "If we want to, we can put a stop to this."
Pete Brancheau, 59, who lives across the street from the shooting scene, said it is a rental property where people often move in and out. He heard six shots Saturday night but thought nothing of it because children in the neighborhood play with firecrackers "all the time," he said.
About a minute later, he heard a series of about three shots, he said. He looked outside a few minutes later and saw police cordoning off the area.
"It's scary," he said. "Especially when there's a baby involved. There's no answer for it."
Leandra Mena, 65, who lives across the street from the house, did not know the people who lived there.
"People moved in and out and before you know it, there's somebody else," Mena said. "This is something we never thought could happen here."
Tina McKinnon, 37, who lives down the street and around the corner, said she saw the family in the neighborhood but also did not know them.
"It was a very quiet house," she said. "Never had any commotion whatsoever. The children were very pleasant."
The white house where the shootings took place is on a tree-lined street that is a block from a United Methodist Church. Churchgoers stopped and watched the scene briefly as they were on their way to Sunday morning services.
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