Lockport Township murder suicide: Patrick Jesernik shoots wife, Cheryl Schriefer dead then self after mistakenly thinking they’d contracted COVID-19. Both tested negative.
According to a statement from the Will County Sheriff’s Office, deputies who were dispatched to a home in the 400 block of Bruce Road in Lockport Township last Thursday circa 8p.m to conduct a welfare check discovered the bodies of 54-year-old Patrick Jesernik and 59-year-old Cheryl Schriefer.
The two, whose bodies were found in separate rooms in the residence laying in pools of blood, had each been shot once in the head. A loaded revolver was discovered near Jesernik’s body. Both were pronounced dead at the scene the Chicago Suntimes reports.
Officials wrote that all the doors and windows inside the house were locked from the inside, the home was ‘neat and orderly’ and there were no signs of struggle.
Patrick Jesernik, often referred to as Pat Jesernik Jr., appeared to have recently retired as a sheriff’s deputy with Cook County.
The person who called police told deputies that he was contacted by Jesernik’s family, who asked to check on him because they had not heard from him.
Of note, police said no previous calls of domestic disputes had been at the address.
Relatives told the authorities that Jesernik ‘had been scared that he and Cheryl had contracted the COVID-19 virus, and that Cheryl was tested two days ago’.
It was reported that Schriefer was having a difficulty breathing, which is one of the symptoms of the coronavirus. The family said that to their knowledge, she had not received the test result.
The next day, an autopsy was conducted on the couple and revealed that the woman was shot in the back of the head at close range. Her death was ruled a homicide.
Jesernik died as a result of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, and his death is ruled as a suicide. Both husband and wife tested negative for COVID-19.
Any Will County residents who need an order of protection or additional resources or information in regards to domestic violence can call Bonnie McPhillips, the Will County sheriff’s office social worker, at 815-724-1878.