HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A pair of welfare checks by law enforcement led to the discovery of four bodies in two counties on Friday -- three in Houston and one in Fresno, including the woman accused of going on a shooting spree before turning the gun on herself.
Dekitta Holmes was a mother of two, described by friends as smart and devoted to her children.
"She's smart, she's educated, she graduated with honors in college and she made the dean's list. It's shocking," explained John Steward, who had a child with Holmes.
On Friday, a friend said Holmes called and told her "she had done something bad and to make sure the kids were not separated."
VIDEO: 1 person found dead in Fresno home
Dekitta is believed to have gone to her sister's home in Fresno and killed her. Carolyn Holmes was found fatally shot. Then, Dekitta allegedly returned to the South Union neighborhood and shot the man she had been staying with inside a small home.
From there, Dekitta is believed to have walked two doors down to where her mother, Laverne Holmes, had lived with Robert Wesley for several years. Investigators believe she shot both of them before committing suicide.
"I got a call around 7 from one of my friends who told me I need to contact my daddy...I called him 30 times and he never answered the phone," said Nicole Powell, Wesley's daughter.
Laverne Holmes was the only survivor, but is reported to be in critical condition. Holmes, who is in her mid 60s, recently had a stroke.
ORIGINAL REPORT: Several dead in apparent murder-suicide spree
Why a mother who cared so much for her children would kill four people close to her baffles those connected to the victims.
Robert Wesley's son said his father was a fixture in the neighborhood. He worked at a corner store on weekends, and was known as Mister Robert to customers. The son who asked he not be identified said trouble had been brewing recently.
"Something about her kids," he said. "She got tired of people telling her about her kids so she lost it."