WELLINGTON, Fla. (CBS/AP) Neal Jacobson's friends and neighbors are struggling to understand what apparently drove the 49-year-old to murder his wife and 7-year-old twins during the early hours of Jan. 23, the same day the two boys were to celebrate their seventh birthday.
Photo: Eric and Joshua Jacobson.
Palm Beach County Sheriff's deputies say that Jacobson crashed his SUV near his home in the gated community of Isles in Southern Florida, and when paramedics responded they found him covered with blood, and ammunition in the car, according to CBS affiliate WPEC.
A sheriff's spokesman said that Jacobson then "told paramedics he had killed his family." Deputies raced to Jacobson's home and found his wife, Franki, 53, and 7-year-old twins, Eric and Joshua shot to death inside.
Photo: Franki Jacobson.
Dr. Henry Katz, a family friend, acknowledged that Jacobson was known to pursue some risky ventures, "such as mining gold in China."
But he also called Jacobson a dedicated father, saying, "If they told me he was father of the year I would have believed them, it's overwhelming."
Photo: Neal Jacobson, charged with killing his wife and twin boys.
Jacobson, a former mortgage broker, was on the board of the local Jewish Community Center and from the outside his family was the picture of harmony and love, Katz told WPEC.
"Something snapped, maybe the pressures of the economy, something caused Neal to snap," Linda Katz, Dr. Katz' wife, told WPEC.
Franki Jacobson was an aspiring children's book author who had published her first book, Green Bean's Birthday Party, in December 2009. She had recently been concentrating on planning a party for their twins' seventh birthday, calling them the joy of her life.
Now the exclusive community is trying to pick up the pieces. And the boys' elementary school plans to have counselors on hand to help their teachers and friends deal with their grief over the death of their classmates.
Neal Jacobson is currently in Delray Medical Center recuperating from injuries sustained in the crash and faces three counts of first-degree murder.