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Family of Kristin Palumbo Longo releases statement
DEERFIELD, N.Y. (WKTV) - Just days after the tragic death of Kristin Palumbo Longo at the hands of her husband - Joseph Longo Jr. - during a killing/suicide in their Cosby Manor Road Home, the family of Kristin Palumbo Longo says they are honoring her memory, but looking to the future of her children.
"Our family wishes to extend our gratitude for the tremendous outpouring of love and support," the family said in a statement. "Our priorities at this time are to ensure that the immediate and future needs of the children are met and that we honor the life and memory of our beloved Kristin. We ask that everyone please respect the privacy of the family and appreciate your continued support."
State Police found the body of Kristin, and a critically wounded Longo in the home Monday after one of the couple's children came home then ran to a neighbor's house to call 911. Investigators say Longo admitted stabbing his wife and then himself.
Kristin Longo's attorney, George Massoud, says his client had exclusive use and possession of the home, and that while Longo's presence there would not have lead to his arrest, he would have been held in contempt of court.
Massoud says Kristin Longo had a 'refrain from' order against Longo. The attorney says the wording and protection offered is similar to a restraining order, stating that Longo must refrain from stalking, harassing or otherwise menacing his wife.
State Police, who are investigating the crime, say that neither they nor Oneida County Sheriff's deputies had ever responded to the Longo's Deerfield home for any kind of domestic dispute.
Attorney Massoud, also a long-time family friend of Kristen Longo, says 'disbelief and devastation' are the only words remotely strong enough to describe what those who knew her are feeling following Monday's tragedy.
On Tuesday, Utica Police Chief Daniel LaBella - Longo's former partner of five years - said that the department had pulled Longo's gun about a month ago, stemming from an incident at Proctor High School.
LaBella said Longo allegedly pulled his weapon while working security at the school. Ironically, Longo's disciplinary hearing for that incident was supposed to happen Tuesday morning, September 29 at 11 a.m.
Instead, Longo's former boss and partner held a news conference at that time regarding the tragic incident.
Chief LaBella also confirms that Longo did appear in Oneida County Family Court Monday, and that he was despondent over situations regarding his marriage.
Court documents show the two had several recent court appearances regarding apparent divorce proceedings and settlements. Chief LaBella says the department saw Longo suffering and made counseling available to him, and that Longo was in the process of taking advantage of the counseling. Still, LaBella says he never saw this coming.
"The police department here did everything possible," LaBella said. "We could not have prevented this in any shape or fashion. I've known Joe for a number of years and his wife and if you were to ask me if I'd seen this coming I would have to say honestly, no. I don't think anybody-anybody seen this coming."
As far as mourning the former investigator, LaBella says, yes, Longo had a long, distinguished career at the Utica Police Department. But LaBella says Longo forfeited the right to any honor that goes with that when he committed this crime, leaving their four children without parents.
The chief says the department is starting a fund drive for the couple's four children, whom he says are the real victims in this tragedy.