Community mourns 3 killed in St. Charles shooting

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There was a flow of emotions on Saturday as a community tried to cope with the loss of 16-year-old twins Brittany Coffland, Tiffany Coffland and their father, Randall Coffland. (WLS)

There was a flow of emotions on Saturday as a community tried to cope with the loss of 16-year-old twins Brittany Coffland, Tiffany Coffland and their father, Randall Coffland.

"Everybody is upset and there's people here. Faculty, friends, people who didn't even know her, complete strangers," said Robert Altergotc, a friend of the victims.

"I can't comprehend it. It doesn't make any sense," said neighbor Mark Simmons.

The sisters and their father were found shot to death at their St. Charles condo yesterday. Their mother, Anjum Coffland, who was the lone survivor of the shooting, remained in the hospital.

Police called it a domestic-related incident but they have not said who pulled the trigger.

Investigators say Randall and Anjum were married but living apart. Officers responded to a call involving the two at another address just last month. But police say that argument didn't escalate to violence.

"I definitely knew what was going on with her family but just like to this extent, it is devastating. I have no words to describe anything of this," said Saba Moosvi, a friend of the victims.

The sisters attended St. Charles East High School. The district had their crisis team in place at the school on Saturday morning for grieving students.

"Brittany was in my U.S. history class and just the sweetest, most cheerful, make my day when I walk in the room, makes everyone's day," said teacher Mike Backer.

"Both of them were the nicest girls I have ever met," said KC Weinzirl, a friend of the victims.

Crisis teams were available Saturday at St. Charles East High School after the shooting deaths of three people - including two teenage girls. A fourth person was also wounded in the shooting Friday evening in west suburban St. Charles, according to authorities.

Officers responded at 5:12 p.m. to a call of shots fired at a home in the 400-block of South First Street, St. Charles police said. They also received a call from someone who was inside the home.

Officers arrived and found a man and two teenage girls shot to death inside the apartment, police said. A woman who was also shot was taken to Delnor Hospital in Geneva, police said. The identities of the three people killed were not released Friday night.

Saturday afternoon, the Kane County Coroner's Office identified the two girls as Tiffany and Brittany Coffland, both 16. The man was identified as Randall Coffland, 48.

The woman who was shot was Randall Coffland's 46-year-old wife, according to police. Her condition had stabilized.

Police said a preliminary investigation suggests the shooting was an incident of domestic violence.

Grief-stricken teenagers sat around candles and flowers near the scene late Friday night, holding a vigil in the cold, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

A sign posted above a memorial that soon sprang up outside the condo building said crisis teams are available for anyone who may need assistance after "the tragedy in our community." St. Charles School District 303 announced that there would be a crisis team available at St. Charles East High School Saturday for community members who need help in the wake of the shooting.

"The City of St. Charles experienced a horrific personal tragedy last night," St. Charles Mayor Ray Rogina said in a statement Saturday.

"Being the close-knit community we are, an incident of this nature has impact beyond the immediate family-we think about and pray for the extended family which includes relatives, high school students and other friends," he added. "We also pray for the greater community, all of us, that we will stand tall and provide calm and peace at such a tragic moment."

Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.
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