NBC News and news services
updated 5/31/2009 8:57:03 AM ET 2009-05-31T12:57:03

A 45-year-old father found dead with his two children along an Oregon hiking trail is believed to have shot them before killing himself, police said.

The bodies were found at a nature preserve Friday. A medical examiner confirmed that all three were shot with a 9mm handgun. Authorities recovered such a gun from the site.

NBC News affiliate KGW identified the victims as James Gumm, 7-year-old son Tyler and 6-year-old daughter Kylie.

A police spokesman told KGW that detectives had interviewed family members and believe the father had emotional issues linked to his divorce. He had no criminal record but was unemployed.

KGW reported that police believed the children had been told they were going on a hike.

Lt. Michael Rouches, a spokesman for the Hillsboro Police Department, said it appeared that Gumm "couldn't handle his family falling apart".

It is the second time in a week that a parent in the Portland area has been suspected of killing a child.

Amanda Stott-Smith is charged with aggravated murder for allegedly throwing her two children off of a bridge into the Willamette River a week earlier. Her 4-year-old son died, but his seven-year-old sister survived.

The Associated Press and NBC News contributed to this report.

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