Two Marines checking on a friend find him dead and his wife clinging to life.
The incident took place Monday afternoon at the couple's Fallbrook home in the 600 block of Elbrook Drive. Investigators said they believe the man tried to kill his wife, then took his own life.
Neighbors said the couple had been renting the home for a few months and seemed like a nice, normal family.
Deputies said two sergeants from the U.S. Marine Corps alerted them when their fellow Marine failed to show up for duty. Officers went to the house to check on the residents, and when no one answered the door, deputies forced their way in.
The 28-year-old Marine was in the garage with a self-inflicted injury,and his 23-year-old wife was in a bedroom with severe head trauma, according to the sheriff's department. Deputies suspect that the couple may have gotten into an argument that turned violent, and the Marine took his life, thinking he had killed his wife
The woman was taken to Palomar Hospital, where she is in critical condition.
Investigators said that if the Marines hadn't checked on their comrade, things could have been much different.
Deputies said the couple have young twins who were at a babysitter's house at the time of the incident.