Azizolah Yazdanpanah, 56, allegedly shot and killed his estranged wife, Fatemeh Rahmaty; their two children; and three relatives from Rahmaty's family, on Christmas Day.
The incident, which occurred in an apartment in the Dallas suburb of Grapevine, happened because Yazdanpanah, according to an AP report that quoted Azar Shahbazi, a family friend, could not tolerate his wife's financial and personal success following their break-up. Shahbazi added that Rahmaty "was doing well on her own".
According to reports, Yazdanpanah had been unemployed for close to a decade and was facing severe financial problems. On the other hand, Rahmaty, who held a state-issued cosmetology license, found employment in two spas, after separating from him.
Initial police reports said that although they were aware of his bankruptcy, they needed more information to reach concrete conclusions regarding the motive. They also said, in an earlier statement, Yazdanpanah had planned the attack, arriving at the apartment dressed as Santa Claus.
It appears now as if the victims were not expecting to see Yazdanpanah that evening. His niece, Sara Fatemeh Zarei, sent multiple text messages to friends, saying "uncle is here" and "he wants to be all fatherly", before she was shot dead, according to a police release.
Police also have released audio records of the 911 call received that evening; the shooter can be heard saying "help.. help.. I am shooting people".