Pine graduate murdered in Hammond

Published 11:45 pm Thursday, June 6, 2013

Relatives, friends and neighbors are mourning the deaths of Theresa Doby and Brandon Colona, who died Monday morning in an apparent murder-suicide at their home near Hammond.

Their funerals were yesterday, Colona’s in Hammond and Doby’s in Franklinton.

Doby, 21, was a 2010 graduate of Pine High School. She graduated from Delta College’s dental assistant program in October.

She and Colona shared a home on Brittani Court in Hidden Pines Estates north of Hammond and had one child together, an infant daughter. Colona also had a 3-year-old son.

Assistant Principal Kendall McKenzie of Pine High School had high praise for Doby.

She served as an office worker at the school during part of her time there, McKenzie said.

“She was very polite and well-mannered,” he said.

“I never saw her misbehave in any way. I thought she was a good kid. She made good grades and had no discipline problems.”

Colona, 26, worked as a body technician at Ross Downing Chevrolet in Hammond, fixing cars that had been wrecked and restoring them to their original state.

On Wednesday, Ross Downing Chevrolet Body Shop Manager Mark Bernard thought back on Colona’s three years there.

“He was my best technician,” he said. “He had only been doing it for four years, but I would have put him up against a 20-year guy.”

Bernard described Colona as a quiet guy who kept to himself.

“He did his job well, “he said. “He never missed work and was always on time. I never thought this would happen.”

Reportedly, the couple had been having relationship problems for some time.

Bernard said he had heard of small problems the couple was having, but they did not seem unusual.

“He never caused any problems around here,” he said. “He was friendly and got along with everyone.”

Relatives, unable to reach the couple, alerted deputies on Monday. The responding deputies could not get anyone to come to the door and heard the baby inside.

They went in through an unlocked back door, found the baby unattended in a seat in the front room then found the bodies of Colona and Doby.

Chief Deputy Dennis Pevey said the evidence recovered indicates Colona shot and killed Doby with a .40-caliber handgun before turning the gun on himself.

The child was in good health and was turned over to relatives, Pevey said.

The murder-suicide was the second such killing of the year in Tangipahoa Parish.

On Feb. 21, Jonathan Williams, 30, reportedly shot and killed his wife, Mallory Ricks Williams, 26, then shot and killed himself inside their residence south of Kentwood.