BALDWINSVILLE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — A 14-year-old is dead after her father allegedly shot and killed her inside their Baldwinsville home and then turned the gun on himself, according to police.
Baldwinsville Police Chief Michael Lefancheck said his officers were dispatched to 6 Triangle Place around 8:30 a.m. Friday morning for a welfare check. The mother of 14-year-old Ava Wood requested the check after the Baldwinsville School District notified her that her daughter didn’t show up to school at Durgee Junior High.
The mother, who does not live at the residence with her estranged husband provided police with a set of keys to get inside. When police entered the home they found 14-year-old Ava Wood shot and killed in her bedroom and her father, 51-year-old Christopher Wood also dead in a separate room from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Onondaga County Sheriff Toby Shelley shared at the press conference that Christopher Wood had a history of domestic abuse involving Ava’s mother. One incident occurred in March 2022, the other just two days ago. Sheriff Shelley said one was a stalking incident and the other was an alleged aggravated harassment incident.
It is unclear at this time if Christopher Wood had a pistol permit and if the weapon he used was registered to him.
Ava Wood was a ninth-grader at Durgee Junior High School. She was a high-achieving student-athlete on the honor roll and a member of the Girl’s JV Soccer team and the Track and Field team.
Ava has been part of our program since 7th grade making a huge impact on it. She had an energizing personality on and off the field. Ava was often seen on the field with 2 different cleats on, the most fashionable footwear we had seen. She was the MVP of our JV team this year. Our soccer family is devastated by this unimaginable loss. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Ava’s family during this most difficult time. Ava truly made an impact in her few years here with our program and we will miss her but she will always be in our heart.Kathy Morse & Tom Hartshorn
Varsity & JV Girl’s Soccer coaches
Baldwinsville Acting Superintendent Joseph DeBarberi shared the tragic news with the school community Friday morning in an email to parents that read:
Dear Parents, Guardians and Staff,
It is with great sadness and a very heavy heart that I inform you of the tragic loss of Durgee Jr. High School 9th grade student Ava Wood.
The district’s Crisis Response Team is providing support and counseling to students and staff as we share this news. They will continue to provide support and counseling throughout the foreseeable future. It’s important to allow children to talk about their grief experiences and what they need during this tragic time. Counselors urge you to listen to your child’s concerns and questions. After communicating this difficult news to your child, if you feel that they need additional support, our counselors will be available to provide you with resources and strategies. Please call or email your school’s principal.
We are a close-knit school community and our hearts are broken by this tragedy. Our thoughts are with Ava’s family and friends during this extremely difficult time.Letter from Baldwinsville Acting Superintendent Joseph DeBarberi
The district’s crisis response team was activated Friday and counseling will be provided on Saturday and Sunday, January 21 and 22 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Durgee Junior High for anyone in need.
The Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office is in charge of the criminal investigation at this time. If anyone has information regarding the incident they are encouraged to reach out to the Sheriff’s Office.