published Saturday, May 21st, 2011

Red Bank investigates 2 slayings

Red Bank investigators believe a 76-year-old woman shot her 39-year-old boyfriend before turning the gun on herself early Friday morning.

It’s the first homicide in Red Bank since 2006, Police Chief Tim Christol said.

Police said Rosemary R. Dehlin’s daughter called police to say her mother was having suicidal thoughts. Patrol officers arrived about 3:15 a.m. at Dehlin’s residence at the Normandy Apartments, 3501 Dayton Blvd., Christol said.

As the officers walked up, they heard a gunshot and called for the SWAT team, he said. Investigators entered the downstairs apartment to find Dehlin and 39-year-old Gary Hines, of Tunnel Hill, Ga., dead in the bedroom, Christol said.

“We are working on the assumption right now that she had already shot and killed Mr. Hines upon the officers’ arrival. We’re assuming the gunshot they heard was self-inflicted,” he said.

Christol said investigators learned that Hines and Dehlin repeatedly had broken up and reconciled. He said police hadn’t received any domestic calls involving the couple.

Investigators still are sifting through notes, documents and other evidence to learn more and provide the families with answers, he said.

“Anytime you work a case like this, it’s difficult on everyone,” Christol said. “The families are obviously devastated by these events.”

Christina McCormick, 20, who lived in an upstairs apartment unit near Dehlin, watched authorities take the bodies out. She remembered Dehlin as being “very quiet.”

“She would come through here all the time. She was very quiet — always kept to herself,” she said. “I think it was a relationship gone wrong.”

McCormick said she never saw Hines at the residence.

She said neighbors are shocked about the deaths.

“It’s not like this area. There’s nothing like that. For that to happen, it’s a shock to all of us,” she said.

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