Police line do not cross
A dispute over a washing machine ended in a quadruple homicide Reuters

A New Year's Eve fight ended in a quadruple killing when a man killed his wife and two others, before his son fatally shot him. The victims were the son's 48-year-old girlfriend, who also lived at the property in Rowlands Height, California, as well as a 27-year-old man who was visiting.

"We're still trying to corroborate the versions of events that occurred and what we're being told occurred," sheriff's lieutenant John Corina said. "It looks like it was a dispute between the dad and the son's girlfriend, probably over using the washing machine. For some reason, this set the dad off."

The 54-year-old father was a heavy drinker with a large gun collection, according to authorities. The mother and brother of the 27-year-old who was killed told the San Gabriel Valley Tribune his name was Ernesto Calzadilla and that he had an eight-month-old daughter.

Maria Cruz confirmed that her son, Ernesto Calzadilla was among the dead. She did not know the family, but her son had socialised with them.

"He would always come around and hang around here because they were really nice to him," Cruz said. "I think the dad had some issues, mental issues."

A neighbour said the family was known for partying. "It looks like they drink heavily every day," Corina said.

Christopher Morey, the 33-year-old son managed to wrestle the semi-automatic pistol away from his father and shot him. Morey is being held on suspicion of murder and on $1m bail, authorities said an NBC report.

According to a police official, Morey and his girlfriend were staying at the Rowland Heights house to look after the 54-year-old mother, who had recently suffered a stroke. "They had been taking care of her," Corina said. "She was in a hospital bed there in the middle of the living room."