WEST JORDAN — A husband and wife were shot and killed by an intruder in West Jordan overnight Saturday, police said.

Officers were called about 1:15 a.m. to a home in the area of 3200 W. 6920 South after a neighbor heard the sound of gunshots and a scream, West Jordan Police Sgt. J.C. Holt said.

Officers found the home where they believed the sounds came from.

“It led them into their backyard, because there was not an answer at the front door. And they found a man in the backyard who was deceased, appeared that he had at least one gunshot wound, possibly more,” Holt said.

A door into the home appeared to have been kicked in, he said. Police went inside and found a woman deceased with gunshot wounds.

The couple was identified Saturday afternoon as Tony Butterfield, 31, and Katherine Butterfield, 30.

Tony and Katherine Butterfield | West Jordan Police Department

“Our deepest condolences to their loved ones and those close to them. Investigation continues. We are working hard to solve this terrible crime!” West Jordan police tweeted.

Three children under the age of 4 were also in the home at the time, Holt said. They were uninjured.

Police believe an altercation occurred between the couple and the intruder before the shooting. Based on evidence found in the home, investigators believe the suspect might have left with a knife wound, according to Holt.

While a possible motive was unknown as of Saturday morning, Holt said police have leads in the case. Police believe the suspect left in a car after the shooting.

Family members of the couple described them as “incredible Christ-like, kind, happy and loving parents, children, siblings and friends.”

“We mourn their loss, but are grateful for the sure knowledge we have that we will be with them again. We hold no ill will toward the perpetrator(s) and pray for them and their families,” the family said in a statement released by the police department.

News of the shooting had a quick, profound impact on neighbors who described the couple as “the sweetest people ever.”

“They are so likeable, just great people. We scored when we moved in next to them,” said Elyse Osborne, a next-door neighbor.

She said her family moved in several months ago and instantly hit it off with the victims’ family.

Osborne’s family is now going through “just a lot of pain, a lot of different emotions” at the loss of their neighbors, she said.

“It doesn’t make any sense, because I can’t think of anybody that would even do that, at all. I can’t think of anybody that would have anything against them at all. So it’s just pretty mind-blowing,” she said.

The victims were members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, according to Osborne. Neighbors and other members of their ward went outside to comfort each other Saturday morning.

“They were definitely a big part of the ward,” Osborne said.

Police say there has been no criminal history at the home or with the deceased couple.

“And it does appear that this isn’t connected with some of the other things that we might surmise with these types of cases,” Holt said, explaining that the case doesn’t appear connected to domestic violence or involvement in criminal activity.

“It’s very tragic circumstances, especially with the children involved.”

The children were taken to relatives’ homes.

Police are asking the public to report suspicious behavior, including someone with an unexplained wound, by calling West Jordan dispatch at 801-840-4000.

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“This is a terrible case. It’s a terrible thing for anybody to have to wake up to, it’s a terrible thing for our officers, frankly, that are involved in the investigation and our crime scene folks. So we’re very hopeful that we can make an arrest on this and bring this to closure,” Holt said.

The Butterfields’ family members thanked police for their work and said they’re “confident in their abilities to bring this case to resolution.”

“We ask for prayers for Tony and Katherine’s three sweet children, as well as for the many, many people who love Tony and Katherine. We are appreciative and overwhelmed with the outpouring of love and support we have received. Thank you,” the family said.

Contributing: Alex Cabrero

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