A 29-year-old Grand Rapids man who shot and critically injured his son before killing himself had battled depression most of his life, the News Tribune learned Friday.
David Krauss was found deceased in a home Thursday on the 1300 block of Fourth Avenue Southeast just before 4 p.m. His son, Wyatt Krauss, 8, was also found wounded by a gunshot.
Both parties had been shot in the head in an attempted murder-suicide scenario, said Sgt. Bob Stein, an investigator with the Grand Rapids Police Department. The boy remained in critical condition Friday in a Duluth hospital, Stein added.
“He’d been suffering with depression since the age of 14,” said Stein of the elder Krauss.
A 9mm handgun was found at the scene and is presumed to have been the weapon involved, Stein said. The man had a valid permit to carry a concealed weapon and had purchased the gun on March 22, Stein said.
Elementary school faculty met early Friday morning to plan a response, including having added social supports for Krauss’ fellow students, faculty and staff.
“From our perspective this is an unimaginable tragedy,” said Superintendent Bruce Thomas of Grand Rapids public schools, Independent School District 318. “What we want to do is support the children in our care, the staff and provide as normal of an environment as possible.”
Thomas said students had been taking advantage of social workers and counselors brought in to assist them and others coping with the news.
First responders arrived at a home Thursday after the man’s mother discovered the scene and called 911. The mother had gone to the house to check on her son after she’d failed to reach him in several phone call attempts, Stein said. Inside the home, authorities found a deceased David Krauss along with his son in the child’s bedroom. The father had been “deceased for some time,” Stein said, while the boy “had labored breathing and he was moving.” The boy was airlifted to a Duluth hospital.
The mother Anna Jo Petterson, of Brainerd, has had limited, if any, contact with her son, Stein said, but was in touch with authorities on Friday.
Family, “is doing as well as can be expected,” Stein said. “It’s definitely a blow to the community and school system.”
The incident remained under investigation by the Grand Rapids Police Department, the Itasca County Sheriff’s Department and the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. The Minnesota State Patrol assisted at the scene.