US: Wealthy Indian-origin family found dead, cops suspect domestic violence

The district attorney, who described the "terrible tragedy" as a "domestic violence situation," said a gun was found near the husband's body.

New York: A wealthy Indian-origin couple and their teenage daughter were found dead in their USD 5 million mansion in the US state of Massachusetts in an apparent domestic violence incident, according to media reports.

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The bodies of Rakesh Kamal, 57, his wife, Teena, 54, and their 18-year-old daughter, Ariana, were found in their Dover mansion at about 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Norfolk District Attorney (DA) Michael Morrissey said.

Dover is about 32 kilometres southwest of downtown Boston, the capital of Massachusetts.

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Teena and her husband, who also went by Rick, had previously run a now-defunct education systems company called EduNova.

The district attorney, who described the “terrible tragedy” as a “domestic violence situation,” said a gun was found near the husband’s body.

He declined to say whether all three family members were shot dead and by whom, the New York Post reported.

Morrissey said he was waiting for the medical examiner’s ruling, which was expected soon, before deciding whether to refer to the incident as a murder-suicide.

The district attorney refused to speculate on a motive for the slayings.

The couple appeared to have faced financial problems in recent years, online records show.

The grim discovery of their bodies was made after a relative had stopped by to check on the family members after not hearing from them in one or two days, the district attorney said.

Morrissey added that there had been no prior police reports or domestic incidents tied to the home.

“There’s been no police reports, there’s been no problems, no domestic issues, no nothing at that house or in the entire neighborhood that I’m aware of,” Morrissey said.

“This is very unfortunate and our heart goes out to the entire Kamal family on this tragedy.”

“I hate to see it at any time,” Morrissey added of domestic violence incidents. “I think some of the tensions that people feel in relationships often come out around the holidays.”

The district attorney said the investigation into the slayings was ongoing and that investigators had worked the crime scene through much of the night.

“Although the investigation is at a very preliminary stage, the evidence available at this time does not indicate the involvement of any outside party, but suggests that this is a deadly incident of domestic violence,” his office said in a statement.

“It is not believed that there is any ongoing danger to the Dover community related to this incident.”

The family’s sprawling mansion estimated to be worth USD 5.45 million went into foreclosure a year ago and was sold to the Massachusetts-based Wilsondale Associates LLC for USD 3 million, according to The Post.

The Kamals had purchased the 19,000-square-foot estate which boasts 11 bedrooms for USD 4 million in 2019, according to the records, according to media reports.

The slain family members were the only ones living in the mansion at the time, the DA said, adding that the area, one of the richest in the state, was “a nice neighbourhood, a safe community.”

Their company was launched in 2016 but was dissolved in December 2021, state records show.

Teena Kamal was listed on EduNova’s website as the chief operating officer of the company, describing her as an alum of Harvard University and Delhi University in India.

According to his biography on the EduNova website, Kamal was an alumnus of Boston University and the MIT Sloan School of Management, as well as Stanford University.

Before working at EduNova, he “held many executive positions in the education-consulting field,” the biography added.

EduNova marketed a “student success system” designed to improve the grades of students in middle school, high school, and college,” The Boston Globe newspaper reported.

Teena filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy in September 2022 listing between USD 1 million and USD 10 million in liabilities, filings show. The case, however, was dismissed two months later due to insufficient documentation.

Teena, who was a Harvard alumnus, was listed as one of the board of directors for the American Red Cross of Massachusetts.

Her online bio touted her more than three decades of working in the education and technology industries.

Meanwhile, the couple’s daughter was a student at Middlebury College, a USD 64,800-a-year private liberal arts school in Vermont, where she was studying neuroscience, according to her LinkedIn.

Morrissey also said a homicide has not been reported in Dover since 2020, and he has never worked a homicide case from that neighbourhood since he started his position as District Attorney 12 years ago.

“It’s very rare to have this kind of a violence situation almost in any community in Norfolk County, but particularly Dover,” Morrissey said.

“It’s a small, well-run community, but like everybody else, there are problems out there that can affect no matter where you live.”

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