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Teens charged with murder in death of grandparents

Posted at 2:44 PM, Apr 20, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-20 14:44:31-04

GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. — A 17-year-old and her boyfriend suspected of killing her grandparents have been charged with murder.

Cassandra Bjorge was booked into the Gwinnett County Jail at 8:25 p.m. Wednesday and is charged with two counts of murder in the death of her grandparents Wendy and Randall Bjorge, Gwinnett Daily Post reports.

Her boyfriend, Johnny Rider, who was booked on Monday, was originally charged with three counts of aggravated battery, one count of battery and one count of theft by taking. Murder charges were added on Wednesday.

Johnny Rider (left) and Cassandra Bjorge were charged with murder in the death of her grandparents. (Gwinnett County Jail)

According to the medical examiner, the manner of death for both victims was homicide and the cause of death for both victims was an incision to the throat. Both victims also suffered blunt force trauma and sharp force injuries.

Police said they believe the couple died a week prior to being found on April 8th.

“Gwinnett County Police responded to the location several times beginning April 6th and attempted welfare checks by the request of family members,” Cpl. Deon Washington said. “At the time, there was no obvious cause to enter the location by force.”

On April 9th when the couple’s vehicle was recovered at an assault scene on Rambling Woods Drive, it was determined that force should be used to enter the home, police said. That is when the bodies were discovered.

The teens allegedly assaulted Rider’s sister and boyfriend — which then led police to discovering Bjorge’s deceased grandparents at their Lawrenceville home.

Following a short SWAT standoff, police were able to capture Cassandra Bjorge and Rider. The two were suffering from self-inflicted wounds. Both teens were taken to Gwinnett Medical Center for treatment.

“We have reason to believe that after the homicides, teens that have not been accounted for may have been inside the home,” Washington said. “These teens were unrelated to the actual homicides but they may have information that proves to be critical for the homicide investigation.”

Officers are asking parents that live in that area to talk to their teens to see if they were at the house or had contact with the suspects between April 1st and April 8th. If they had contact with the suspects or were at the house police would like to talk to them.

Between October of 2015 and March of 2017 Gwinnett County Police responded to the home off Furlong Run in Lawrenceville 31 times for various reasons. Of those, 18 were for runaway calls and at least eight times for COAP (check often as possible) by request of neighbors, authorities said. There were several other domestic dispute calls and illegal drug suspicion calls answered at the location.

“This is a very unique and disturbing case on so many levels and detectives are still exploring motive,” Washington said. “We may never find a scenario that makes sense to a reasonable person.”