Connecticut teacher Jeffrey Giuliano did not realize he killed his 15-year-old son, whom he shot while investigating a burglary at his sister’s house, until police identified Tyler Giuliano’s body.
The strange twist of events began early Friday morning, when Tyler, wearing a mask and holding a “shiny object,” broke into his aunt’s home in New Fairfield, Conn., at around 1 a.m., according to Reuters.
Jeffrey Giuliano’s sister called her brother about the burglary, and Giuliano brought his gun to investigate the break-in.
"Believing the suspect was armed with a weapon and about to attack him, the [father] discharged his personal handgun at the suspect," the New Fairfield Police Department said in a statement cited by Reuters.
That suspect turned out to be Tyler Giuliano, Jeffrey Giuliano’s 15-year-old son, who died at the scene.
The younger Giuliano "was lying on the ground in the driveway with obvious gunshot injuries, holding a weapon," police said. They did not say whether the teen was carrying a gun during the burglary.
"It's something out of a Hollywood script," New Fairfield First Selectman John Hodge told the Associated Press. "You certainly don't expect it to happen in your own small hometown where there's very little crime."
Jeffrey Giuliano, 44, a fifth-grade teacher at Meeting House Hill School in New Fairfield, did not know the burglar he killed was his adopted son until police identified the body, ABC News reported. He told police that the masked burglar came at him with a weapon, the network said.
The elder Giuliano has not been charged in the killing of Tyler, whose death is still under investigation.
"We're working out the timeline with the evidence and interviewing the witnesses and will figure out the timeline," New Fairfield Police Lt. J. Paul Vance told ABC News. "We're going to examine everything and try to understand exactly how and why this occurred."
"All in all it's a tragedy,” Vance told the AP.
Jeffrey Giuliano, who was described by students as a popular teacher at Meeting House Hill School, once asked if his band, “Split Decision,” could play at the school, with proceeds going to charity, according to minutes from a New Fairfield Youth Commission meeting from May 14, 2010.
Giuliano, a native of New Fairfield, wanted to teach in his hometown, according to schools superintendent Alicia Roy.
"He connects with the students. He's a caring person. Very interactive class,” Roy told the AP.
Tyler Giuliano attended New Fairfield High School and had a passion for flying, whether it was gliders or single-engine planes, Roy said.
"He would fly as many hours as possible," she told the AP.