updated 1/15/2011 3:07:33 AM ET 2011-01-15T08:07:33

A man killed his wife and two children in the bedrooms of their stately southeast Michigan home before apparently committing suicide inside his sport utility vehicle in a Wal-Mart parking lot, police said Friday.

Officers found the bodies of Jennifer Schons, 38, and the couple's two sons — Tynan, 6, and Camden, 4 — in their beds after a family friend reported the children hadn't been at school and their mother missed an appointment, said Novi Police Chief David Molloy.

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Novi police then issued an alert to area law enforcement agencies, and Oakland County sheriff's deputies found Mark Schons, 39, dead inside his vehicle hours later.

Police weren't saying how any of the victims were killed. Autopsies were expected to be performed Saturday at the Oakland County medical examiner's office, Molloy said.

The chief said police didn't have a motive.

Weapons recovered
"I honestly cannot speculate," he said. "From the information that I've received, it's simply an act of a madman."

Police said they found weapons in Mark Schons' vehicle, including one they believe was used in the killings, but they declined to identify them.

Molloy said there has been no documented criminal history or police contact involving the Schons family.

Family members and friends said the couple had been considering divorce, but continued to live together in the large home, Molloy said. The couple also had been experiencing financial problems, he said.

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Mark Schons had owned a party supply business in the Livingston County community of Howell that closed and was working as a computer programmer in the Lansing area. Jennifer Schons was an engineer with General Motors Co.

Northville Public Schools' Superintendent Leonard Rezmierski described the deaths as "an almost unspeakable tragedy," and said the district has mobilized crisis counselors to be available at Thornton Creek Elementary School beginning Monday. Tynan was a first-grader and Camden was a pre-kindergarten student.

"It's very difficult to explain it to the children. They feel vulnerable, they feel exposed," Rezmierski said. "I see our resources all weekend and all next week and beyond being in place for them."

Molloy described the incident as isolated in an otherwise safe community. The city had only one homicide last year and none the year before.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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