Surviving sister recounts night of Clovis double homicide

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The only survivor of a brutal attack Saturday morning describes what sounded like an earthquake when her sister and mother were killed at a home in Clovis. (KFSN)

The surviving victim of a double murder tells her story as detectives search for a man accused of killing her family.

Authorities said Dave Thomas McCann killed his estranged wife, 36-year-old Tierney Cooper-McCann, and her 68-year-old mother Judith Cooper at their Clovis home.

McCann was last tracked on the Central Coast after the murders Saturday morning and detectives continue to search for clues into his whereabouts.

Two minutes after Cortney Cooper Rider called 911, officers pulled up to a bloody murder scene and found the mother and daughter dead side by side

Cortney first heard the banging and ran to wake everyone up before she says the suspect kicked in the door.

"I went in and grabbed the phone and was getting ready to call 911 and by the time I walked out he was slitting her throat," she said. "He looked at me and said 'you're next,' and I immediately ran out the front door and ran to the next door neighbors."

Cortney says her brother-in-law was out to get her and her mother.

"My mom was hiding in the bedroom, having it locked," she explained. "And he busted down the door after not being able to catch me. He went back to the house, he slit my mom's throat in the back bedroom."

Rider was the only one to escape.

Authorities found the Penske truck that they believe McCann drove to the coast. Police said it's possible he's trying to make his way back to his home country in the United Kingdom.

"It's obviously something you think about," Clovis Police Chief Matt Basgall said. "We're also obviously concerned about the family now, that's left behind to deal with this tragedy so we're doing the best we can to work with the families."

Family members said a failing marriage and a folding business, may only partly explain, what caused McCann to snap.

The website of McCann's former company now officially said they're closed.

Tierney worked at Community Regional Medical Center doing what loved ones say she was so good at, helping others.

Monday morning, the CEO of the hospital remembered her before a press conference marking hospital week.

"Over the weekend, we lost a dear CRMC family member, Tierney Cooper-McCann," CEO Craig Wagoner told the gathered crowd. "She's a child life specialist here in our burn center. I would like for you all to join me to join me in a moment of silence for Tierney."

While family members are mourning the sudden and shocking death of a daughter and mother, Clovis police are still searching for the McCann.

Family members and friends fear he could be coming back to the Central Valley.

"He has lost his mind and I'm really concerned. Not only for myself and for my family members but I'm really concerned for the community at large," said Rider.

Cortney always knew her sister was strong, and, even in her dying moments, Tierney managed to show the ultimate strength and care for her mother.

"My sister, even after her throat being slit, was able to, after he left, walk back to the back bedroom and lay with my mom and they died together," she said.

Detectives believe McCann may be getting around on a stolen bike in the Paso Robles area.

Those who know the suspect said he has a thick Irish English accent and a limp because of a recent work related injury. Anyone with information on his whereabouts are urged to call the Clovis Police Department.
Related Topics:
newsclovisclovis police departmenthomicide investigationClovis
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