Sandra Palmer, North Carolina Woman, Kills Son, Wounds Daughter, Before Killing Herself

01/09/2013 02:00 pm ET | Updated Jan 09, 2013

Greensboro, N.C., police are investigating a grisly murder-suicide in which a mother shot her children, killing her teenage son, before turning the gun on herself.

Police said that Sandra Lyn Palmer, 47, shot her boyfriend, daughter and son on Monday night following a domestic dispute.

Palmer appears to have pepper-sprayed her boyfriend, Maurice Eugene Edmonds, incapacitating him, before shooting her daughter, Danielle Imani Jameison, 18, and son Maurice Edmonds II, 14, with a handgun.

Edmonds the elder was shot trying to take the gun away from Palmer, according to the Winston-Salem Journal. He then ran from the house for help and collapsed outside.

Palmer went into another room and shot herself with a second gun after the first gun jammed, Greensboro police chief Ken Miller said in a news conference Tuesday night.

"It defies explanation why somebody would do what was done in this case," Miller said.

Jameison and the elder Edmonds were taken to an area hospital and are now recovering. Maurice Edmonds II, the son of Palmer and the elder Edmonds, was pronounced dead at the scene.

According to WFMY, the family had no history of disputes, and police are still trying to determine a motive for the shooting.

Rich Thomae, principal of the middle school Maurice Edmonds II attended, called the young man a "rising star" and described him as a three-sport athlete and an honor roll student.

Need help? In the U.S., call 1-800-273-8255 for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

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