Man pleads not guilty to killing mother, grandparents, caretaker in Groton

GROTON, Mass. (WHDH) — A recent college graduate from Maine pleaded not guilty Monday to beating his mother, grandparents and their caretaken to death last week in Groton.

Orion Krause, 22, of Rockport, was ordered held without bail at Bridgewater State Hospital pending a competency hearing at his arraignment on murder charges Monday in Ayer.

An elderly man and woman and two middle-aged women were found murdered Friday at the Common Street home. The victims were identified as grandparents, Elizabeth Lackey, 85, and Frank Lackey, 89, both of Groton. The suspect’s mother was identified as Elizabeth Krause, 60, of Rockport, Maine. The home health caretaker was identified as Bertha Mae Parker, 68, of Groton.

Middlesex County District Attorney Marian Ryan said the victims appeared to have died of blunt force trauma. She says a baseball bat was recovered at the scene.

Ryan called the situation “a tragic incident of family violence.” She says the bodies of Krause’s family members were found inside the home, while the caretaker’s body was found outside.

Krause traveled with his mother to his grandparents’ home on Sept. 7, according to investigators. At some point, investigators said he attacked and killed all four people before fleeing.

Wagner Alcocer, who lives three doors down from the victims, said he found Krause in his backyard, naked and covered in mud. Alcocer said he opened the door and asked Krause what he needed. He said Krause told him, “I need help. I need help. I murdered four people.”

“Terrible, it’s just a tragedy. Unimaginable. And I feel bad for the whole family,” Alconer said.

Alconer gave Krause a sheet to cover up and then called 911. He said Krause sat in his yard emotionless and at one point, said he needed his sleeping pills. Police then arrived and arrested him.

Krause is an Oberlin College graduate and jazz drummer. Krause’s attorneys refused to offer any additional details.

The motive behind the killings is not clear. Krause was charged with four counts of murder and will undergo a mental health evaluation at a state hospital.

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