[UPDATED:] Theresa and Madison Yancey, OC Homicides Nos. 55, 56: Murder-Suicide Victims

UPDATE: Victims and killer identified (updated throughout) . . .

Reports of a family fight and gunshots in the 9900 block of Dandelion Circle in Fountain Valley around 6 p.m. Friday led police to a home on a cul de sac where they found a woman dead in the driveway.


Three more gunshots rang out from inside the home, prompting the responding officers to force their way inside and discover the bodies of a 40-year-old man and 8-year-old girl who'd been shot to death.

The home owner and an adult female relative were hiding in the bathroom during the rampage. The woman of the home and two 15-year-old male relatives had run out the front door before the shooting indoors.

No identities have been released, but here is what police have been able to piece together:

Randall Yancey, 40, who was involved in a custody dispute with his soon-to-be ex-wife, Theresa Yancey, had waited outside until the 46-year-old mother drove up. After she pulled up and got out of the car with her daughter, Madison Yancey, 8, Randall confronted Theresa and an argument began. Relatives came out of the home and pulled Madison inside.

Randall shot Theresa, leading the relatives to call 9-1-1. Randall then tried to force his way into the home, kicking a hole through the front door. He eventually made his way in by shooting a hole through a side window. That's when the woman of the house and the 15-year-olds bolted out of the front door.

Randall shot and killed Madison and then himself.

Police say the dead woman lived with her daughter in the home, which is owned by her parents. It's just off Brookhurst Street, across from Mile Square Park.

The Orange County Register reports:

Theresa Yancey filed a petition to dissolve the couple's marriage Oct. 4, according to Orange County Superior Court records. Each of the parents filed a declaration for child custody, Theresa on Oct. 4 and Randall on Oct. 25, records show.

No family court hearings had been scheduled. The last court action taken before the shootings was a summons filed by Theresa Yancey on Oct. 27, records show.

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Katie Vinh
Katie Vinh

Madison Yancey was my best friend since I came to her school in 3rd grade. It has been a year since my teacher and class had remembered the first day she came in with us..Such painful memories to see her dead..Sorry Madison, I couldn't come to your funeral.. :(


There was no legal custody dispute; they shared alternate weekends with their daughter. Randy showed up and demanded his daughter, even though it was not his weekend. He was determined to have her and would not accept 'no' for an answer. He had a semi-automatic weapon with him.

Bill Strahl
Bill Strahl

Cold darkness creeps in when people are weak and listen to the evil whispered into their hearts... and they are not strong enough to reject the wicked thoughts....

A father is the one who should be willing to lay his own life down for his child... not to be the monster who is coming to harm and kill the child....

No matter what the differences are... this was no answer... it was cowardly and viscious...

As can be seen here, the police can always be called... but they can not always be there in time other than to take statements and do clean up.

Had the homeowners had the means and mindset to protect themselves, once the soon-to-be ex-son-in-law shot a hole in the side window and stepped inside, the guy would have been an ex-son-in-law much sooner and the killing would have stopped with his demise.

Often violence serves no purpose to truly remediate the issues that had spawned that violence.

My heart is sad for such waste and needless loss.

Stephanie A. Richer
Stephanie A. Richer

As a family alw attorney, this sickens me. I often remind my clients, most orders made by the Court during a divorce are TEMPORARY. Custody and child support? The child will be 18 one day . . . providing you don't kill her before then. My God, people, how mad can you be in a divorce to shoot an 8-year-old?


There was a custody dispute.  Theresa and Randy shared custody with Randy having Madison on weekends.  However, months into this agreement - he was told that would change even though it was not done through the courts. He flipped.  Randy was never violent to anyone.  Even the detectives/his family/Theresa's family - will agree he's never been violent or threatened violence to her or Madison ever.  Until that fateful day.  He lost it and he took 2 innocent lives with him.  No one can or will ever understand this vicious choice he made.  But I will say - you don't ever know what someone is capable of - when they snap.  Everyone on this earth is capable of snapping. 


Well isn't he the smart one!  I'm sure where he's at he doen't get his off weekend visit!! He sounds like a real winner!!!


Stephanie,They son't have to be mad just a person that thinks they're always.What I can't figure out is why the woman and two teenagers didn't grab the little girl!  She had to be scared out of her mind!!  How do they justify leaving her?  I guess they will have to live with the guilt!  God bless her!  May she RIP.

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