Raleigh sister of California shooter calls it a nightmare come to life

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The Raleigh sister of a man who went on a shooting rampage in northern California called it the family's worst nightmare come to life. (WTVD)

In an emotional interview with ABC11 Wednesday, the Raleigh sister of a man who went on a shooting rampage in northern California called it the family's worst nightmare come to life.

"Obviously the most critical thing is what is going on with the victims and those families," said Sheridan Orr. "We're so sorry. And we can't imagine what they're dealing with, and it's a small community, and I just don't know what to say other than our hearts break."

She said the family had been on an emotional roller coaster with her brother Kevin Neal for years and nothing they heard from him this week seemed like a warning of what was going to happen because his behavior was always so erratic.

"He clearly had no business with firearms and refused to get any help. He wouldn't even go to government clinics when we would arrange it because he was afraid of the government getting his numbers. It was full-on paranoia and delusion," she said.

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Shooter's sister makes emotional statement

At a news conference earlier Wednesday, investigators said they had found the body of Neal's wife under the floorboards of their home.

Tuesday, Neal shot and killed four other people and wounded 10 at different locations around the rural community of Rancho Tehama Reserve. Police later shot and killed him.

ABC11 has learned Neal was raised in Wake County, and his mother still lives in the area.

The family said Neal moved to California about 12 years ago and was raised in Cary, though his mother lives in Raleigh.

Neal attended East Carolina University. ECU said Neal, 44, attended classes at the university from August 2001 to May 2004. According to the university, he did not get a degree, and never declared a major.

His mother talked to The Associated Press by phone from Raleigh and said he called her a day earlier and told her that he was finished feuding with the small rural community where he lived.

RELATED: California gunman fired 30 rounds at school, left when he couldn't get inside

"Mom it's all over now," Kevin Neal's mother said he told her in their final conversation. "I have done everything I could do and I am fighting against everyone who lives in this area."

Neal was working as a pot farmer and had recently married his longtime girlfriend before he died in a shootout with police on Tuesday.

The mother asked that only her first name, Annie, be used because she feared for her safety. She was unaware of her son's role in the rampage until contacted by AP.

In her last few talks with her son, Neal's mother said he sounded desperate and despairing over his relationship with his neighbors, who he said were cooking meth and creating fumes that were harming his nine dogs.

"All of a sudden, now I'm on a cliff and there's nowhere to go," she recalled her son telling her. "No matter where I go for help here I get nobody who will help me. All they are doing is trying to execute me here."

The first two people Neal shot and killed were neighbors before he sought seemingly random victims elsewhere, including an elementary school, where he was locked out.

RELATED: 5 dead, including gunman, after shootings at 7 locations in rural North California

He had been charged with stabbing one of the neighbors in January, and Annie said she posted the $160,000 bail for him and had spent over $10,000 on lawyer's fees.

Neal's mother said her son told her the neighbor was slightly cut after Neal grabbed a steak knife out of the hand of the neighbor who was threatening him with it.

Police had also visited Neal's house a day before the shootings on a domestic violence call, authorities said, but gave no details.

The head of the area's homeowners association said neighbors had been complaining about Neal firing guns excessively on the property, which sits at the end of a dirt road.


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(Copyright ©2017 ABC11-WTVD-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved - The Associated Press contributed to this report.)