APEX, N.C. (WTVD) -- Two women were shot and killed in a townhome neighborhood just southwest of downtown Apex on Monday afternoon.
Apex Police Department also found a dog shot and killed in the neighborhood.
The scene stunned residents who heard the bevy of gunshots, a rarity in this area.
"It was like 3 o'clock, I heard like six to eight gunshots," neighbor Tom McKay said.
Apex police officers said they received a call around 3 p.m. about a disturbance near Brussels Drive and Chipping Drive. While officers were on the way to the neighborhood, the call was upgraded to a shots fired call.
Officers quickly found two women in the area who had been shot multiple times. The two were treated immediately and rushed to a hospital, but they did not survive.
"This is a sad day for our town. Anytime there is a tragedy, we hurt as a community. We will continue to pray for all involved," Apex Mayor Jacques Gilbert said in a statement to ABC11. "We are thankful for all first responders who courageously responded to the scene to render assistance and provide safety."
Shortly after they arrived on scene, officers heard more gunshots. They followed the sound and found a suspect. A man was taken into custody without incident.
Apex Police later identified the man as Harry Bates Hardman, 37, of Brussels Drive in Apex.
Hardman was booked into Wake County Jail on two counts of murder and one count of animal cruelty.
Family members identified one of the women killed as Nancy Taylor. On Tuesday morning, someone had left flowers at her doorstep.
Taylor moved into the neighborhood about 3 years ago to be closer to her grandchildren. Her family said she loved the neighborhood so much she worked to become a leader with the HOA.
Neighbors said she was affectionately called "grandma" by other children who lived nearby.
The other woman was identified by family as 36-year-old Gabrielle Raymond.
Tom McKay, who is a Lee County deputy, was off duty and at home as the shooting unfolded a few houses down.
"I was upstairs watching everything happen, and I saw a lot of the Apex officers show up; they came down the hill, they were going around the back of the townhomes with ARs," McKay told ABC11.
Chopper 11 flew over the scene around 4 p.m. and saw dozens of police vehicles and a large area roped off with crime scene tape. Chopper 11 also located what appeared to be a rifle lying on the ground behind one of the homes in the neighborhood.
McKay took cellphone video of Hardman being taken into custody.
"We definitely know who that guy is ... he's just a little bit off," McKay said. "He lives alone, just kind of weird, I guess, he was often, in my opinion, kind of just, strong emotions, you know laughing but could also get angry."
McKay is plenty familiar with crime scenes but said this felt different.
"To see it like, off duty is just kind of a completely different perspective," McKay said. "I'm just going to keep saying, It's Apex, I would have never have thought, you know? But you never know."
Hardman is scheduled to appear in court at 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday.