Father Used 12-gauge Shotgun on his Five-year-Old Son-Killings, Murder-Suicide shocks area
By CORY ALLYN and CHRISTINE BATES – Staff Reporters
April, 15, 2010
ANCRAMDALE — Police tape and dozens of law enforcement vehicles lined the road along Route 82 just north of Pine Plains last Wednesday, April 7, marking the tragedy that occurred there less than a day earlier.
According to the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office, a little before midnight on April 6, 42-year-old Franklin Hankerson reportedly killed his 5-year-old son, Khaliff Taylor Hankerson, before taking his own life.
Columbia County Sheriff David Harrison reported that the bodies were discovered the next morning by Khaliff’s grandfather, who lives next door and was picking the boy up to take him to the Paige George Nursery School in Pine Plains, which he attended.
Khaliff is the son of Veronica Brenner, a first lieutenant with the Pine Plains rescue squad. Harrison said Brenner and Hankerson never married and had lived apart for the last two years.
The sheriff said Hankerson used a 12-gauge shotgun on his son and a 40-caliber rifle on himself. The bodies were found in the bedroom, but no note was found, he added, saying there was no indication of the father’s motives.
Harrison said Hankerson had some health issues and was undergoing dialysis treatment the evening of April 6, returning home around 10:30 p.m. Khaliff was being looked after by his grandfather during that time.
Hankerson was unemployed, law enforcement said. He had no history of violence and police never received any calls regarding the deceased’s address. Harrison did say there had been recent discussions between the mother and father regarding Hankerson’s use of marijuana in the trailer. No drugs were found at the scene.
Autopsies were conducted at St. Peters Hospital in Albany on April 8. The investigation is continuing by sheriff’s office personnel and Columbia County Coroner George Davis.
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