July 19, 2010 -- The teenager woke to the searing pain of a knife slicing through his throat, and survived to find his mother shot to death.
Nevertheless, the 17-year-old in Spokane, Wash., was able to call 911, meet the police at the door, and while bleeding profusely, beg the cops not to let his two younger brothers see the body of their murdered mom.
"Don't let them see my mom," he pleaded with the officers, according to Sgt. David Reagan of the Spokane County Sheriffs office.
Despite the teen's concerns, one of his 9-year-old twin brothers was already shot in the head. The other 9-year-old, who is autistic, survived unhurt because he decided to sleep on the couch that night instead of in his bed.
The boy who was shot in the head was put on life support at Sacred Heart Hospital, but he was taken off life support late Sunday and declared dead, police said today.
Police are not identifying the family, but have stated they were attacked by the mother's long time boyfriend Jan R. Demeerleer, whose body was found by a SWAT team later Sunday morning.
"He suffered a gunshot wound to the head as a direct result of taking his own life," said Reagan.
Demeerleer was immediately the prime suspect in the attack on the woman, his estranged fiance and her children.
"We believe [the suspect] had problems with the autistic child," said Reagan. "There were reports of domestic violence towards him which is why the relationship ended between Demeerleer and his estranged fiance."
Demeerleer allegedly forced his way into the woman's home around 2:45 a.m. Sunday, shooting her in the head before walking to the twin boys' rooms. Only one was sleeping in the room and he shot him before slitting the throat of the 17-year-old.
"The autistic child was not in his room that night," said Reagan. "For whatever reason, he decided he wanted to sleep on the couch and we believe that is why he was uninjured."
"Locating the suspect was our first priority," added Reagan. " More investigation into this case is pending."
The wounded teenager was listed in good condition.