New details have emerged from a standoff that took place in rural Daviess County Monday night.
The suspect, a former police officer who was charged in connection with a weekend fatal fire, shot at several officers before taking his own life.
Court documents reveal Dave Call, 50, shot and killed his ex-girlfriend, Rebecca Taul, 53, at her home in Trenton, Mo., between 6 and 9 p.m. Sunday before setting the house on fire. Investigators found Ms. Taul — who had just recently ended a relationship with Mr. Call — and her bulldog shot to death after the fire was extinguished.
“Call was distraught over the breakup,” a probable cause statement reads. “Investigators spoke with a witness who indicated that Call had informed her of his actions, and that he indicated to her that he was standing over a dead body and that he had ignited a fire so that no one would know what had occurred.”
The standoff with Mr. Call then occurred around 4 p.m. Monday at a residence in the 10200 block of State Route T, just outside of McFall, Mo. It’s believed the man barricaded himself after official charges were filed in Ms. Taul’s death.
They included first-degree murder, arson, armed criminal action and abandonment of a corpse. A no-bond warrant was issued for his arrest.
The North Central Missouri Major Case Squad, a multi-jurisdictional group of law enforcement throughout the region, was activated and working the case.
Officers from several agencies responded to the home near McFall to make contact with Mr. Call, who proceeded to open fire on responding officers with a .338-caliber rifle, a high-powered weapon.
Daviess County Sheriff Ben Becerra said the home belonged to Mr. Call’s friend, who was not home at the time of the incident. He was originally from the Jamesport, Mo., area.
Investigators on scene were also notified that Mr. Call is a former law enforcement officer. Mr. Becerra said that escalated the level of risk involved.
Trenton Police Chief Tommy Wright said Ms. Taul’s death was unfortunate.
“My condolences and prayers go out to the family of the victim and this community,” he said. “Certainly, this is a small community in which everyone is really, really tight and everybody hurts when something like this happens.”
He said his department is heavily involved with supporting domestic violence programs in the community.
“We work tirelessly to try to rid this community of the scourge of domestic violence,” he said. “It’s a cultural thing, it’s a social thing and we have to move forward, and we have to keep trying new things. This is exactly what the face of domestic violence can end up looking like.”
On Tuesday, Ms. Taul’s home was boarded up and guarded by yellow police tape. Approached from the side, the two-story home showed a white exterior, however, the front was blackened from fire damage.
Ms. Taul’s neighbor, Mary Kinser, said she was at the nearby street corner when she saw Mr. Call approach the home. She said she’d known Ms. Taul since Ms. Taul’s daughter and son-in-law had moved into the house that Ms. Taul would eventually occupy. She’d only been living alone there for two weeks.
“I watched him come up and knock on the door and I didn’t feel right,” she said.
She knew Mr. Call and Ms. Taul had broken up and said Ms. Taul had been afraid of Mr. Call following the split.
Ms. Kinser said she is saddened by Ms. Taul’s death.
“It hurts. It’s a loss,” she said. “She was hugging me and she was happy we could finally be friends, and then this happened.”
Still, she was glad she was home and able to get a description of Mr. Call to law enforcement, which officers said was key to helping them identify him.
“I just praised God that I could do that,” Ms. Kinser said.