Cops: Embattled Councilwoman Killed Husband, Self
The crime scene and autopsy were consistent that Bill was deceased approximately an hour before Donna.
Councilwoman Donna Fairchild was found dead with her husband Tuesday.
"Detectives were advised that Bill Fairchild was the victim of a homicide-suicide. The crime scene and autopsy were consistent that Bill was deceased approximately an hour before Donna," said Chief Douglas L. Law in a statement after the autopsy. Each of the Fairchilds suffered a single gunshot wound.
The bodies were found Tuesday morning, hours before Donna Fairchild was to attend a City Council meeting and face possible sanctions over a travel expense voucher and public comments.
A neighbor told CNN on Wednesday she had lunch with Donna Fairchild on Monday and was the recipient of a box left by the councilwoman, apparently on the morning of the shootings.
According to police, Donna Fairchild contacted City Attorney Cheryl Truman Hunt around 8:30 p.m. Monday to discuss an opportunity to meet with the mayor and council in order to tender her resignation before the meeting. The city attorney at 10 p.m. confirmed with Fairchild a Tuesday afternoon meeting with the mayor and council.
At a news conference, police in this city along Interstate 15 near the Arizona border provided a timeline of the events that led to the shooting deaths.
Sometime late Monday or early Tuesday, Donna Fairchild dropped off a box at the friend's house, Law said.
"At 4:20 a.m., an email was sent by Donna to a friend to say she left a note with a box on her friend's porch to be sent to Donna's mother," the statement said. "At 4:33 a.m., Police Dispatch received a 911 call from Donna Fairchild which gave her address, said her door was unlocked and that she would be 'post-suicide.' "
"At 4:35 a.m., officers and detectives arrived on scene and located Donna and Bill Fairchild in the back bedroom and found each with a single gunshot wound. Both were deceased."
Toxicology tests conducted by the Clark County Coroner's Office were expected to take four to six weeks, according to the city.
The city released the audio of the 911 call, in which Donna Fairchild gave the address, said the couple was in the bedroom, the front door was unlocked and "I am post-suicide." The police dispatcher said, "And what's going on there?"
There was no audible response.
Melanie Giarratana said she had known the Fairchilds for about 10 years and enjoyed a lunch Monday with Donna Fairchild.
"It was wonderful," said Giarratana, who has been active in local issues and economic development in this resort town that features golf resorts and casinos.
Donna Fairchild had told her she had made a mistake by filing a $94.60 mileage expense form for a trip city officials said she did not make, Giarratana said. But the councilwoman said she never signed for the check.
Giarratana said she had no inkling of what was to occur the next morning.
Donna Fairchild forwarded her an e-mail joke around 8 p.m. Monday. The councilwoman sent her another e-mail around 4:20 a.m. Tuesday about the box, but Giarratana did not see the e-mail until 7 a.m., when she found the package outside her home.
According to Giarratana, Donna Fairchild wrote her, "I have left a box full of items for my Mom by your front door. Please make sure she gets it! I know this will never make sense. I am sorry. Thank you for being my BFF."
Bound in rubber bands, the box contained jewelry, cash and a note expressing apologies, Giarratana said.