Tarboro quadruple shooting blamed on mental illness

TARBORO, N.C. (WTVD) -- Police looking into three related shootings in Tarboro at the end of February that left four people dead say the suspect was likely suffering from severe mental illness.

It began just before 1 p.m. on Feb. 28 at the Master's Touch Barber Shop in the 800 block of West St. James Street.

Investigators said 40-year-old Ian Sherrod walked in and shot 36-year-old George Lee Dickens Jr - killing him.

A short while later, Sherrod shot 28-year-old Ana Marlen Cruz-Franco and 36-year-old Ventura Sanchez at the Mobile Home Estates. Cruz-Franco died at the scene and Sanchez died later at the hospital.

Police officers found Sherrod sitting in his truck displaying a gun at a parking lot in the 2,300 block of Main Street.

After trying repeatedly to get Sherrod to surrender, police say he got out of the truck and pointed the gun at officers, who shot and killed him.

In a news release Tuesday, the Tarboro Police Department said investigators have examined medical records that show Sherrod had been repeatedly treated for "mannerisms indicative of paranoid schizophrenia within recent years."

"The symptoms of his illness appear to have manifested in recent weeks culminating into the delusional behavior witnessed on the morning of the shootings," said the department.

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