Authorities are investigating what prompted an apparent murder-suicide that claimed the lives of the longtime editor of an East County community newspaper and her estranged husband.
Deputies checking on the welfare of Judy Winter-Meier, 61, found her body and that of her 59-year-old husband, Jim, in their Borrego Springs home early Monday evening, according to sheriff’s officials and the
, the biweekly publication for which Winter-Meier had worked since the mid-1970s.
Detectives believe Jim Meier, a retired park ranger, shot his wife with a revolver before turning the gun on himself, said Casey Jones, a reporter for the
Her body was found in her kitchen, and her husband on a living-room couch, according to sheriff’s officials.
The staff of the newspaper grew concerned after Winter-Meier failed to show up for work Monday, a deadline day for the 4,000-circulation periodical, Jones said.
She hasn’t missed a Monday that we put the paper together, ever,’’ he said.
The deaths were
shocking’’ news for the small desert community where Winter-Meier had long been a prominent citizen, Jones said.
There’s been people parading in all day, just in disbelief,’’ he said.I mean, these people grew up with her.’’
—City News Service