Riverside Police Chief Rick Oliver identified the deceased as Wesley Wescott, 20, of Oneonta.
“On Sept. 1, the Riverside Fire Department and I responded to a call on Deerfield Road regarding a shooting,” he said.
Oliver said Donald Littlefield had been shot in the leg.
“He told us his stepson, Wesley Wescott, had shot him and fled the scene,” Oliver said. “We called for assistance from the St. Clair County Sheriff’s Department and the Pell City Police Department.”
Oliver said officers pursued leads from members of the community, but did not find Wescott or his wife, Christian Stipes, that evening.
“On Sept. 2, we received a call regarding a white female who was struck and killed by a train just west of Riverside City Hall,” he said. “St. Clair Sheriff’s Department Investigator Wayne Layton assisted and we identified her as Christian Stipes.”
Oliver said on Wednesday, authorities planned a grid search of the area where Wescott was believed to be.
“We received assistance with the grid search by the St. Clair County Sheriff’s Department, ARES, the Amateur Radio Emergency Services, St. Clair County Emergency Management Agency, Etowah County Sheriff Todd Entrekin sent a helicopter and mounted patrol units, Pell City Police Chief Greg Turley piloted the Etowah County helicopter, and the Pell City Police Department also assisted with the search,” he said.
Oliver said Wescott was located at 11:36 a.m. in a pond in a wooded area at the end of Main West Street in Riverside.
St. Clair County Coroner Dennis Russell said Wescott’s body was sent to the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences in Montgomery Thursday for autopsy to determine the cause of death.
“It appears he had been dead for several days,” Russell said.
Russell said Stipes’ death was ruled undetermined.
Oliver said Stipes was walking along the railroad tracks and stepped over to the side but was hit and killed.
“Our thoughts and hearts go out to the families of these two young people,” he said. “It is a sad way to conclude these cases. We wouldn’t wish for it to end this way.”
Oliver said Littlefield is recovering in the hospital.
“This was a domestic issue turned bad,” he said. “Finding the two bodies closes the shooting case. We have no reason to believe anyone else is involved.”
Oliver said he especially wants to thank St. Clair County Sheriff Terry Surles, St. Clair County Sheriff’s Department investigators Bart Lonergan and Wayne Layton, ARES, Etowah County Sheriff Todd Entrekin and the mounted patrol units, the St. Clair County EMA, the Pell City Police Department and Pell City Police Chief Greg Turley for their assistance with the case.