An unspeakable tragedy has struck the world of professional sports.
Antonio Armstrong, a former linebacker for the Miami Dolphins was shot and killed along with his wife in Houston, Texas.
Police have confirmed that the main suspect in the crime is the couple’s 16-year old son.
The young man’s name has not been released to the public due to his age, he has been charged with murder as a juvenile and is being questioned by authorities.
According to a local NBC affiliate, the 42-year old Armstrong and his wife, Dawn, were found at approximately 2 a.m. after police responded to a 911 call.
Dawn was pronounced dead at the scene of the crime.
The ex-NFL player was transported to Memorial Hermann Hospital and listed in critical condition… but later passed away from a gunshot wound to the head.
The couple’s two other kids were at home at the time of the incident, but were unharmed.
Those familiar with the family are attempting to come to grips with how this could have happened.
“This was an outstanding family. The male of the family was an absolute hard-working breadwinner,” local homicide lnvestigator Jimmy Dodson said, via KPRC.
“He was an associate pastor in the area church. He’s a great guy. The mother was apparently a great mother, according to family members.
“Like I said, it was kind of the all-American family.”
Investigators who searched the southwest Houston residence discovered a still-smoking gun with a note next to it that reads “I’ve been watching you.”
Police then arrested the 16-year-old boy.
“There was nothing left out. There was no neglect or anything. There was nothing that even could possibly have justified this situation,” Dawn Armstrong’s cousin, Vaun Lee, told reporters.
“This doesn’t even make sense. It makes no sense.”
Prior to turning professional, Armstrong was a college football star at Texas A&M, where he played for the Aggies from 1991 to 1994.
The university released the following message on Twitter soon after the horrible news broke:
Armstrong was named first-team Associated Press All-America linebacker in 1994 and was drafted in the sixth round of the 1995 NFL Draft by the San Francisco 49ers.
He was released that October after suffering an ankle injury and signed with the Dolphins, with whom he recorded four solo tackles his room season.
“Antonio was a special young man. He was an All-American and an outstanding player, but he was an even better person,” his former head coach at A&M, R.C. Slocum, said in a statement.
“He was such a positive influence on his teammates. He always had a great big smile and was a joy to coach.”
The Dolphins said via statement that they were “saddened by the tragic” deaths, adding:
“Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends during this difficult time.”
A GoFundMe page, meanwhile, has been created to help the family in the aftermath of the shooting; thus far, it has raised over $53,000.
“Let’s rally around this family and show them how much we loved Dawn and Antonio, and that we will miss them and their big hearts dearly,” the page reads.