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He told wife she’d return to Africa ‘in a coffin,’ 911 call says. Then she was killed.

New Jersey authorities suspect Henry Okongo fatally shot his wife, Lydiah, pictured above, before turning the gun on himself in March.
New Jersey authorities suspect Henry Okongo fatally shot his wife, Lydiah, pictured above, before turning the gun on himself in March. Screenshot from Facebook

Lydiah Okongo, a visiting home nurse, was immediately met with threats when she got home from work, according to a 911 call obtained by the Jersey Journal.

Okongo, 40, sounded rattled but calm as she spoke with the dispatcher on Feb. 17. "I walk through the door he’s telling me how he’s upset with me and the only thing he’s going to do is just kill me and kill all of us and we’re going to be transported to Africa in a coffin," Okongo said after the worker asked how her husband was threatening her.

The Kenya native was found shot to death the morning of March 5 in Jersey City, New Jersey, the Hudson Reporter said, more than two weeks after the 911 call. Okongo’s husband, Henry, 51, was also found dead from an apparent gunshot wound to the head, the newspaper reported.

Their two young children, a 3-year-old boy and 1-year-old girl, were found in the home unharmed, authorities said. But the boy was taken to a hospital, NorthJersey reported. The couple’s other daughter, a 10-year-old girl, was apparently at school when the shooting happened, the Jersey Journal reported.

Authorities are investigating the deaths as a murder-suicide, NorthJersey reported.

Hours after Henry Okongo’s angry outburst, Lydiah showed up at a Valentine’s Day party without him, appearing as though everything was fine, the Jersey Journal reported.

Similar incidents had happened before, according to the newspaper. The most recent was the third time in just over a year that police were called to investigate a domestic dispute at the home, call logs show. But it’s unclear if any action was taken, the Jersey Journal said.

Lydiah Okongo had been shot multiple times, authorities said. Her body was found by a family member on the first floor of her home, the Hudson Reporter said.

The deaths stunned neighbors, who thought the couple seemed "happy," according to the Daily Nation, a Kenyan independent newspaper.

Lydiah Okongo's co-worker asked the police to check on her the day she was killed, saying it was strange for the normally “reliable” woman to miss work, the Jersey Journal reported.

The day after a murder-suicide claimed five lives, including the shooter, in the small town of Ponder, Texas, residents are shocked. The last unexplained death in the town was seven years ago, the police chief said.

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