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Police: 7 found shot dead in Dallas-area apartment

Christmas day shooting in Grapevine, Texas
Police tape is seen near the victims' apartment complex in Grapevine, Texas. AP

(CBS/AP) GRAPEVINE, Texas - Grapeville Police are now investigating the deaths of seven people whose bodies were found inside an apartment unit on Christmas Day.

CBS DFW reports Grapeville Police Department spokesman Sgt. Robert Eberling said that four adult women and three men were found dead inside the apartment complex in a town outside of Dallas around 11:30 a.m. on Dec. 25. In a news release, Eberling said the victims all "appear to have gunshot wounds."

Investigators believe the seven people were cleaning up holiday wrapping paper when they were shot, but a motive remains unclear. Two handguns were found near the bodies in the apartment, which was decorated for the holiday with a tree. "It appears they had just celebrated Christmas. They had opened their gifts," the spokesman said.

The victims ranged in age from 15 to 58 and were different generations of the same family. Not all of them lived in the apartment unit, Eberling reported.

Eberling said the original 911 call came from inside the unit. "No one was on the other side of that call," he said. "Officers came and forced themselves inside."

All of the victims appeared to be related and Grapevine police said they are not pursuing a suspect as they believe the shooter was among the dead. There were no signs of forced entry and all the doors and windows were locked from the inside.

Neighbors were shocked to see the investigation from their windows during Christmas. "There hasn't been any crime in this complex that they know of--not even a break-in," said nearby resident Vanessa Barrera. "To hear something like this, it's shocking."

Jose Fernandez moved his family to the apartment complex several months ago and said he always felt safe in the area, but now he is afraid of his son's safety. "This is really outrageous, especially on Christmas. I guess something like this can happen anywhere, but seven people dead. It's just very scary."

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