One of two doctors killed in a luxury Boston penthouse sent a text to a friend saying, “gunman in the house”.
A prosecutor disclosed the desperate message during the hospital bedside arraignment of Bampumim Teixeira.
The accused was injured in a shootout with police at the apartment where the bodies of anaesthetists Richard Field and Lina Bolanos were found.
The couple, engaged to be married, were reportedly tied up and had their throats slit.
The suspect was formally charged on Monday at Tufts Medical Center in Boston where he is being treated for non-life threatening injuries.
He is being held without bail on two counts of murder. His lawyer entered not-guilty pleas for him.
Mr Teixeira, 30, was arrested after police exchanged fire with him while responding to reports of an intruder at the high-rise apartment complex in South Boston on Friday night.
Upon arrival, officers found a set of keys on the floor and used them to open the door when no one responded to their shouts, Suffolk Assistant District Attorney John Pappas said during Mr Teixeira’s arraignment on Monday.
Mr Teixeira was struck in the hand, abdomen and leg during the shootout with the two officers.
The officers apprehended Mr Teixeira inside the penthouse flat before discovering Dr Field, 49, and Dr Bolanos, 36, who were already dead, the Boston Globe reported.
A message of retribution was apparently written on the wall, an official told the newspaper.
It is not clear whether Mr Teixeira knew the victims. A motive is unclear.
Mr Pappas declined to say the cause of death, but said both victims had suffered “obvious trauma” and were pronounced dead at the scene.
Dr Field – who is from London, according to his Facebook page – sent two text messages to a friend in a plea for help, Mr Pappas said.
One text said “there was a gunman in the house”.
The friend called the police, Mr Pappas added.
Police also discovered a black backpack at the scene containing jewellery, which authorities believe belonged to Dr Bolanos.
A motive for the attack is still unclear and Mr Pappas did not say how Mr Teixeira was able to get through tight security to reach the top levels of the residential complex.
Mr Teixeira was recently released from prison after serving nine months for bank robbery.
His next hearing is set for 8 June.
Dr Bolanos was a paediatric anaesthesiologist at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary.
Dr Field worked at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital, an affiliate of Harvard Medical School.
Dr Bolanos had cancelled plans on Friday night to invite her boss for dinner because Dr Field was not feeling well, the Boston Globe reports.
In a strange twist, the intended dinner guest – Dr Sunil Eappen – was the father of a toddler shaken to death by a British nanny two decades ago.
Louise Woodward was convicted of the involuntary manslaughter of eight-month-old Matthew Eappen in Boston in 1997.[“Source-bbc”]