Cops, Courts and Fire

NEARBY: Couple Dead In Murder-Suicide ID’d By Coroner

The couple died in a murder-suicide.

A Bucks County Coroner’s Office vehicle leaving a scene. File photo.
Credit: Tom Sofield/

The elderly couple killed in a murder-suicide incident earlier this week has been identified by the coroner’s office.

John Alpaugh, 88, and Joan Alpaugh, 85, both of Buckingham Township, were found with gunshot wounds to their heads on Monday, according to Coroner Meredith Buck.

Authorities said that John Alpaugh shot his wife Joan dead, dialed 9-1-1, and subsequently took his own life.

Buck classified Joan Alpaugh’s death as a homicide, while John Alpaugh’s death was ruled a suicide.

The coroner said Joan Alpaugh has been dealing with medical conditions in the lead up to the murder-suicide.

Buckingham Township police responded to John Alpaugh’s call about the killing of his wife around 7:47 a.m. on Monday. Officers arrived to the Alpaughs’ home in the Buckingham Springs Development along Durham Road.

Attempts to communicate with the occupants of the house via phone were not successful, leading officers to approach the home. They found a note on the front door, asking them to contact one of the couple’s children, authorities said.

Upon entering, police found John Alpaugh’s lifeless body. A subsequent search led to the discovery of Joan Alpaugh.

Investigators also found letters in the residence addressed to family. The letters also provided directives related to the couple’s assets and burial wishes, police said.

About the author

Tom Sofield

Tom Sofield has covered news in Bucks County for 12 years for both newspaper and online publications. Tom’s reporting has appeared locally, nationally, and internationally across several mediums. He is proud to report on news in the county where he lives and to have created a reliable publication that the community deserves.

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