BRIGHTON, Colo. (CBS4) – Authorities in Brighton have identified the 48-year-old man who they say attacked multiple members of a family with a machete on Tuesday night and killed one of them — 51-year-old Bonnie Skinner. Police say Lonny Lynn McNair’s attack was “shockingly violent.”
“This was the kind of scene that makes even veteran cops take a step back,” Brighton police spokesman John Bradley said.
In addition to the death of Bonnie, her husband Vincent and her daughters Paige and Abigayle were badly injured. So was a friend of the family’s who was staying at the home named Daniel Smeal.
The crime happened at approximately 9:50 p.m. on the 2400 block of Cherry Circle and the suspect drove away when police showed up. There was a chase and the suspect got in a crash on Interstate 76 in Lochbuie. Then a K-9 unit helped officers chase down the suspect, who is now in custody and was treated for a dog bite.
“All of us were on the phone all night with each other thinking it was some kind of sick joke or maybe they thought it was Bonnie and it was someone else, but it’s real,” said Justine Myers.
Myers, who was Bonnie and Anna Skinner’s boss and friend, described Bonnie as kind, giving, and the heart of the business. She said the family would often take in people who needed help and get them back on their feet.
“This incident wasn’t because they were involved in anything bad,” Myers said. “They were doing good, but unfortunately doing good hurt them.”
Lonny McNair was arrested on charges that include murder, attempted murder and burglary.
“Our understanding is that this was a person the family knew and was trying to help out in the past and recently there had been some misunderstandings between them and that may have been the motivation,” Bradley said.
A GoFundMe page has been created to assist the Skinner family in its recovery.
Anyone who might be able to help investigators put together all the pieces of their investigation is asked to call 303-655-8740.