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Shooter’s neighbors knew he was planning something

The man who gunned down a woman, kidnapped and killed her son and turned the gun on himself Friday morning had been planning something, according to a neighbor.

Joe Frankulin sold most of his possessions in the past few weeks and “barricaded” his house, said the neighbor, who did not want to be identified Saturday.

Police on Friday said that Frankulin’s house was a “mess” and street signs and boards covered the windows.

The neighbor, who also identified the 47-year-old, didn’t speculate about the “plan,” but said neighbors recently became “wary” of Frankulin, whom they called “skittish.” They knew something was wrong.

Metro had been called to the house in the 7200 block of Hardtack Circle to check on him multiple times, the last time being about a week ago, neighbors said. Officers would use a bullhorn to get him to come out. The home had been owned by his mother, who died in 2007. A relative now owns the home.

On Friday morning, Frankulin shot a woman two doors down from his house, took her 8-year-old son back to his house and killed him before shooting himself, police said.

The Clark County coroner’s office on Saturday did not identify the woman, the boy or Frankulin.

Metro on Friday said there appeared to have been previous disputes between the man and the woman, but they offered no details. Frankulin had no criminal record in Clark County, court records show.

On Saturday afternoon, people gathered and children played in front of the woman’s house, a child swung from a plastic chair attached to a tree branch.

An impromptu memorial lay on the sidewalk. Candles and a Minion stuffed animal could be seen from the roadway.

A man who did not identify himself said the family did not want to speak to media and announced that the neighborhood was “closed.”

The neighbor who identified Frankulin said that he was trusted, but would often complain about “being broke,” so neighbors gave him yard work around the cul-de-sac.

Children would hang around his garage where he would build bike ramps for them, the neighbor said. But recently, the children stopped showing up, he said.

Frankulin was described as a being heavy-set with long hair, often wore visibly dirty clothes, including a “Vegas” T-shirt. He was also a guitarist in the death metal band “Goatlord,” which was active for at least 10 years beginning in 1987.

A Facebook post created under Frankulin’s name said he had failed to reunite the band for a festival in Germany last year.

The band’s music consists of growls and heavy metal instrumentals. Album names include “The Last Sodomy of Mary.”

Metro said Frankulin shot the woman about 7 a.m. Her three children were inside her house with her.

Her daughter was able to run to a neighbor’s house and call for help, Metro said. Arriving officers, who were there in about four minutes, realized that the woman’s son was missing and then they heard gunshots. A toddler was then found inside the victim’s home.

Neighbors directed police to Frankulin’s house but SWAT officers were not able to establish contact with him there. Police entered through the garage and found Frankulin’s body and the boy’s body inside a room. It wasn’t immediately clear how the boy was killed.

Someone spray painted “I love you baby” on the now-boarded up garage door Friday, the neighbor said.

Police on Saturday didn’t release new details about the killings, but on Friday were still trying to determine a motive.

It’s not so much “what happened, but why,” Metro homicide Lt. Dan McGrath said.

Contact Ricardo Torres at rtorres@reviewjournal.com and 702-383-0381. Find him on Twitter: @rickytwrites.

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