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Sandy, Utah shooting: Mom reported harassment days before she and son were killed

SANDY, Utah – The woman who died, along with her 6-year-old son, in a shooting in a Utah suburb Tuesday afternoon had reported harassment from the suspect three days earlier, Sandy police said.

CBS affiliate KUTV reports that according to a news release from the Sandy Police Department, Memorez Rackley, 39, reported "telephone harassment" early June 3 from Jeremy Patterson. Sandy police declined to provide further information except to say that officers spoke to Patterson and asked him to stop contacting Rackley.

Patterson is accused of shooting and killing Rackley and her 6-year-old son. Rackley's 9-year-old son and another 8-year-old girl were wounded in the shooting. Patterson then turned the gun on himself, according to police. 

Jeremy Patterson KUTV

Authorities said the two were or had been in some sort of relationship and that the killings they described as targeted happened Tuesday afternoon just after Rackley picked her boys up from elementary school.

Rackley was walking about six blocks from the school when she flagged down a driver. That unidentified female driver picked up Rackley and her boys but her car was then rammed by a pickup truck driven by Patterson, who got out and opened fire. Also shot and injured was the driver's daughter, said Sandy police Sgt. Jason Nielsen.

The extent and nature of Rackley and Patterson's relationship and the motive for the shooting remained unclear Wednesday as detectives probed leads, Nielsen said.

Rackley was married to another man but Nielsen did not provide more details. Patterson was not the father of her children, he said.

Rackley family spokesman Jeff White said he didn't know the exact nature of the relationship between Rackley and Patterson. He declined to elaborate on the state of the Rackley's marriage but said "they both loved each other very much and they were husband and wife."

"Rackley's husband is doing as well as can be expected for someone dealing with the loss of the mother of his children as well as his youngest child, with another son fighting for his life," said White, who has been a family friend for 30 years.

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"She was an amazing mother, she's beloved by all her friends and family ... just totally adored by the whole community," White said about Rackley.

Nielsen said investigators are still trying to determine if the woman who picked up the family just happened to see them or knew them.

The suspect lived in the nearby suburb of Draper, where neighbor Patricia Briennieson described him as a muscular man who looked like a body builder and had a mixed-martial arts sticker on the back window of his pickup truck.

Court records did not show previous criminal charges or requests for protective orders filed against Patterson.

In the quiet neighborhood with winding roads and homes nestled near mountains, the shooting happened on the day before the last day of school.

On Wednesday at the Brookwood Elementary School attended by the children who were shot, teachers tried to keep the final day before summer as normal and festive as possible.

But there was a significant police presence and a sign fashioned out of blue and red plastic cups on the school's outside fence offering love for the boy in critical condition.

The scene in Sandy, Utah, where a mother and her six-year-old son were shot dead by a suspect who then killed himself, Tue., June 6, 2017. KUTV

The injured boy was a 5th grader and missed his graduation Wednesday -- so the students, teachers and parents read his name aloud and gave him a standing ovation, said classmate Chloee Walker.

Counselors were at the school to help students and parents deal with the aftermath of the shooting.

Toni Linsenmeyer said Rackley and her husband had been separated but that both attended all of their 6-year-old son's soccer games in the spring.

Linsenmeyer's daughter was in the boy's school class and played on the soccer team, which was coached by Rackley's husband.

"It breaks my heart," Linsenmeyer said.

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