Couple fatally shot at home

Police say ex-city officer killed wife, then himself

Daughter heard shot, called 911

August 16, 2002|By Julie Bykowicz | Julie Bykowicz,SUN STAFF

A 64-year-old former Baltimore police officer fatally shot his 46-year-old wife and then himself at the couple's Brooklyn Park home yesterday morning, Anne Arundel County police said.

Their 19-year-old daughter, who was in the home at the time, called 911 after she heard a gunshot and saw her father, Floyd Ray Lilly, with a .38-caliber Colt revolver, said county police spokesman Lt. Joseph E. Jordan.

The daughter and her fiance live at her parents' one-story Haile Avenue home near Brooklyn Park Middle School. Neither was injured, police said.

Police heard a gunshot as they arrived just after 9 a.m., Jordan said. When a special operations unit entered about 10:45 a.m., officers found Charlene Emma Lilly dead with gunshot wounds to her head and chest, and her husband dead with what appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head, Jordan said. Both bodies were in the kitchen, he said.

A family that has known the Lillys for decades described the man everyone called "Ray" as an easygoing guy who was having trouble in his second marriage.

"I think he had had enough of her," said Dean Evans, 65, who lives nearby and said he met Ray Lilly when they were about 18 years old. He described his friend as "a neat freak" who smoked pipes and loved to work in his yard and walk his Rottweiler puppy.

But another neighbor, Dock Hershman, 71, who has lived behind the Lilly family on Camrose Avenue for about 40 years, described Ray Lilly as a gun lover with a bad temper.

"He didn't want to take no stuff from anybody," said Hershman.

Lilly joined the Baltimore police in August 1967 and retired in 1982. The department could not give a specific reason for his retirement, but neighbors said he left the force because he hurt his back. He had worked as a security guard since his retirement.

His first wife, Doris, died of cancer more than 20 years ago, neighbors said. They had four children, three of whom live in Anne Arundel County, neighbors said.

Ray and Charlene Lilly had a son and a daughter together. Neither would talk to reporters yesterday.

Charlene Lilly - neighbors called her "Char" - owned a hotdog stand for many years. Neighbors said she kept to herself, rarely speaking to anyone.

Police said the couple did not have a history of domestic violence, and court records show no protective orders against either Lilly.

Sandy Goodrich, 35, who lives two doors down from the Lillys, said she occasionally heard Ray and Charlene Lilly arguing but "they always kept it inside."

A second-degree assault charge was filed against Charlene Lilly earlier this week.

Tracy Tabor, who worked with Ray Lilly at North Arundel Hospital, said in a criminal complaint that Charlene Lilly confronted her in the hospital parking lot Tuesday, repeatedly striking her and accusing her of breaking up the marriage.

A hospital spokesman confirmed that Tabor and Ray Lilly were employees but would not give further details. The criminal complaint identifies Ray Lilly as a hospital security officer.

Residents in the Lilly's neighborhood described a chaotic scene yesterday morning.

Goodrich said she watched the scene from her front porch yesterday. She said she tried to calm the 19-year-old daughter, who the neighbor said is several months pregnant, after she fled the house.

"She was a wreck," Goodrich said. "She told me that her father had shot her mother."

Minutes later, Goodrich said, police arrived and whisked the young woman away and ordered neighbors to evacuate their homes.

Hershman said a sniper positioned himself at a window in the rear of his house for about 45 minutes as police assessed the situation.

"He had all of that city police gear - guns, bats, all the stuff they have," Hershman said. "You don't mess with people like that."

Sun staff writers Ariel Sabar and Del Quentin Wilber contributed to this article.

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