ABI assumes lead role in quadruple death investigation in rural Winston County

Shown is County Road 327 in rural Winston County where four people were found shot and killed in a car Wednesday, October 2, 2013. (

The discovery of four bodies in a vehicle in rural Winston County has investigators working overtime to determine what exactly happened.

The victims' white vehicle with Tennessee tags was first noticed by a local woman who lives in the Black Pond community while she made her normal drive into work Wednesday morning. When the car was still there hours later around 7 p.m., she became suspicious and alerted the authorities after making a chilling discovery.

"I saw one person and thought he had committed suicide. Come to find out, there were multiple," said the woman, who has asked ABC 33/40 to conceal her identity.

Winston County sheriff's deputies arrived at the scene followed by a state forensics team. The{} Alabama Bureau of Investigation was also dispatched and it has since taken the lead role in probing the fatal shootings.

Almost 24 hours later, authorities in Tennessee continue to work on determining why the victims were in Alabama.

"My mom was living over here. My uncle lives here. I'm kin to four families on this road," the woman said. "And how would you feel if it was next door to you? I just really hate that it happened here in the community because it's going to have people concerned for a while." While investigators have yet to release the names of the victims, authorities did say they were between the ages of 25 and 50 and were all acquaintances. Sheriff Rick Harris believes the case is a possible murder-suicide, which should come as a relief to Winston County residents still shaken by the disturbing news.ABC 33/40 reporter Haley Westbrook will have the latest from Winston County on the news at 5 and 6 p.m. You can watch the newscasts live online here.