Crestline woman fatally shoots grandson, self

CRESTLINE, Calif. Sheriff's deputies and Crest Forest Fire personnel responded to a report of two people shot at a residence on the 500 block of Springy Path in Crestline Monday.

At about 5:30 p.m., Crestline resident James Snyder discovered his wife and his grandson at the home. They both had gunshot wounds. Officers and paramedics determined both were dead.

A sheriff's dept. homicide team was summoned and began a murder investigation.

Sheriff's detectives assert that Denise Snyder, 50, shot her grandson and then shot herself. The Snyders had custody of their grandson since his birth, according to the department. The grandson was reportedly diagnosed with autism.

"To me, I think she couldn't handle the kid, because it wasn't hers, it was her grandkid," said neighbor Mario Julian. "And we did hear her yelling at him a lot, quite a bit, and figured that was normal."

Julian said he spoke to the husband, who said his wife was taking the prescription drug Oxycontin. According to the husband, she was out of medication and may have suffered a breakdown.

"He's saying that she was taking them like six pills a day," said Julian.

"This is a small community, so we're all just freaking out about this," said Crestline resident Stevan Oerlemans. "This just doesn't happen up here."

The investigation was ongoing Tuesday.

Anyone with information related to the case was asked to call homicide detectives at (909) 387-3589 or (800) 78-CRIME.

If you have a child with autism or know someone who does, help is available to get you through those tough times. Call the Autism Response Team at 888-AUTISM2 (288-4762) or send an e-mail to

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