ANDOVER, MASS. (WHDH) - Authorities in Andover believe the shooting deaths of a father, mother and son appeared to be a case of domestic violence and a murder-suicide, according to the district attorney.

In a joint-announcement, Essex County District Attorney Paul F. Tucker and Andover Police Chief Patrick Keefe identified the those killed as Andrew Robinson, 56, Linda Robinson, 55, and their son, 12-year-old Sebastian.

The three were found after Andover police officers were first called to the victims’ home on 48 Porter Road early Thursday morning. According to officials, the call came from inside the home just after 3:21 a.m.

Upon arrival, officers were forced to breach two doors before discovering the victims, “all deceased from gunshot wounds,” according to officials with the DA’s office, who said it appeared Andrew Robinson “died of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.”

“Obviously, we know the how; we’re trying to figure out the why right now, so we’re going to need some time to figure that out,” Chief Keefe said during a news conference.

12-year-old victim’s school cancels classes, plans prayer service as community mourns loss

Classes at St. John’s Preparatory School in Danvers, where Sebastian was a student in the sixth grade, were canceled as the community mourned his loss.

Speaking with 7NEWS, Dr. Ed Hardiman, the Head of School at St. John’s, described how news of Sebastian’s death had shaken the school to its core.

He described the 12 year old as a gentle soul who loved the arts, was well-liked by his teachers, and a had a great group of friends.

“Our hearts are broken, this is a lot to process when a young person passes away,” Hardiman said. “Sebastian was an extraordinary young man – he was a very gentle soul. His teachers really remembered (him) as someone who is highly creative, super engaged, had a great group of friends, loved to talk about literature, was a talented musician.”

Grief counselors were being made available at the Roman Catholic school following Thursday’s news. Hardiman said the student body has been challenged by the death of a student in the past, with the circumstances of the latest loss being especially tragic.

“To parents, really take a moment to hug your kids and let them know that they’re loved, and to kids, know that you’re loved as well and that we believe in you and we know that you can do great things and we’re with you,” the head of school said.

A prayer service at the school has been scheduled for 5 p.m.

This is a developing story; stay with 7NEWS on-air and online for the latest updates.

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