On March 10, 2009, 28-year-old Michael McLendon fatally shot his mother, along with her three dogs (some reports say four) in their Kinston, Alabama home before setting the house on fire and heading to his uncle’s in nearby Samson. Once there, he killed his uncle and two cousins, as well as a neighbor woman and her 18-month-old child who were visiting on the porch. Then, he went next door and murdered his grandmother. After fleeing the scene, he began shooting at people from his car, killing three others. A police chase ensued until McLendon reached his former workplace Reliable Building Products, where he engaged in a shootout with police before committing suicide inside the building.
During their search, authorities found a printed letter written by McLendon to a family member in a mailbox near his home that revealed his intentions for the shooting:
“Moma was very sick. Had lung cancer I think. So I put her out of her
misery. She wanted to die with her dog’s and she did. I put the dog’s to
sleep as well. I couldn’t leave this world not knowing what would
happen to our dog’s. Moma didn’t know what hit her. I shot her while she
was asleep. She never knew what hit her. Nor did the dog’s.
I’m sorry! But Moma had suffered enough. And so have I. Some of the people who made us suffer will pay.
I had planned to put this off for a while but
Moma got suspended today. Wasn’t her falt. You know moma always worked
hard … She said she didn’t care and was relieved and She was. I
carried her to get some Beer and walked around for a while out side,
moma Loved it there.
For me I’ve been miserable for a long time
and can’t take it no more. Moma could have gotten on at Wayne Farms. But
that would have finished her. I couldn’t stand by and see that happen.