The Florida man who gunned down his ex-wife and two others later killed himself, hours after the he ambushed the family in Alabama.
Kenneth Dion Lever took his own life in a Pensacola parking lot Wednesday after a police officer spotted him.
He’d returned to Escambia County, Fla., and met with a minister after gunning down ex-wife Dana Lever; her sister, Bonnie Reeves Foshee; and her brother-in-law, Don Foshee at a mobile home park in northern Alabama, according to AL.com.
“It was obvious it was a well-thought-out plan,” Gardendale police Lt. Bryan Lynch told the news website. “He came for that reason. We don’t know if he was targeting all three, or if that’s just how it happened.”
Lever’s 11-year-old daughter, living with Dana Lever, witnessed the gruesome shooting, but was able to escape.
“She did see enough to know what happened and then she ran to a neighbor’s house,” Lynch told the news website. “So we knew very quickly who the suspect was.”
Lever, 52, ambushed the four at his ex-wife’s home in Gardendale early Wednesday.
Her sister and brother-in-law arrived to take Dana Lever and her daughter to Chicago, where her son was graduating from U.S. Navy boot camp.
They were packing up the Foshees’ van at about 8 a.m. when Lever appeared from a nearby shed.
Sporting a camouflage t-shirt, blue jeans and a handgun Lever opened fire on the four.
Lever, who had a troubled past with the law, had parked his rented red Nissan near a community pool, walked to the home and carried out the shootings.
He fled it one of his victims’ cars, made his way back to the rented car and started the 265-mile drive back to Florida, police told the news website.
Multiple law enforcement agencies scoured the town, located 15 miles north of Birmingham, and temporarily placed it on lockdown.
Alabama authorities reached out to their counterparts in Pensacola, AL.com reported, and the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office staked out his Florida home and other locations.
A deputy spotted Lever sometime later, the news website reported. He pulled into the parking lot for the Navy Federal Credit Union’s call center, got out of the car and fatally shot himself.
“We were not surprised. based on witness statements, he had already made statements before any of this that he was thinking about killing himself,” Gardendale Police Chief Mike Walker told AL.com.
Police said they first had to break the news to the daughter that her mother was dead, then that her father had taken his own life.
“She has been so traumatized,” Lynch said. “I don’t know that she has filtered it all thoroughly. She’s going to need a lot of support.”
The Red Cross and Navy worked with Alabama officials to notify Dana Lever’s son in Chicago, police told AL.com.
Police aren’t sure if there was a single incident that sparked the horrific rampage.
Dana Lever, 50, claimed Lever was abusing their daughter during unsupervised visits, she wrote in a December 2016 order of protection cited by AL.com.
“My daughter has a very different disposition when she returns home,” she wrote. “She is very clingy to me and will not let me leave her. She wants to sleep in my bed and she wants to sleep with the lights on.”
That wasn’t Lever’s first run-in with the law. He’d been arrested several times before, often for drug possession. His rap sheet was also riddled with harassment, robbery and assault charges, documents indicate.
He was arrested twice in 2015 — on Sept. 28 and Oct. 13 — for separate sexual assault incidents in Lower Windsor Township, Pa.
The future crazed gunman was hit with a wave of charges: involuntary deviant sexual intercourse with a child, aggravated indecent sexual assault of a child, indecent assault of a person less than 13 years of age, corruption of minors and dissemination of explicit sexual material of a minor.
His trial was scheduled to begin in York County, Pa., on Sept. 11.