David Crowley, an independent filmmaker and screenwriter, shot his wife, Komel, and their 5-year-old daughter Rani in the head before shooting himself, according to a report from the Hennepin County medical examiner’s office released Wednesday.
Yet Jason Allen, a producer based in Los Angeles, also said Wednesday that Crowley’s words and actions when the two met in September and in an e-mail Crowley sent him on Dec. 17, seem contradictory to a man who was about to kill his family and himself.
A news release from the Apple Valley Police Department also contained the official identifications and said the investigation is continuing.
Crowley had written a screenplay and produced a trailer for a movie called “Gray State,” about government conspiracy and militarization. He wrote to Allen that he was working 18-hour days to build his concept “into an empire.”
The two met in Los Angeles, when Crowley asked Allen to consider signing on to the project as an executive producer.
Allen, a first assistant director who said he has worked on independent films, music videos and commercials, said, “David had this consistency and this very steady way about him. In many ways it felt very contradictory to the actions of a murder-suicide. I truly saw an optimism to it.”
Crowley talked in the two-page e-mail to Allen about being “almost completely abandoned” by his original film partners and being “at the end of a tunnel all alone.”
But he said, “Gray State fans are growing at a rate of 100-200 per day even now, and when I get started I can only expect they’ll keep coming.
Crowley told Allen in the e-mail that in a few weeks he would release a documentary called “The Rise,” a “manifesto on the Gray State model,” as well as “a few new trailers for a Gray State series.”
Crowley wrote, “I have no idea who much money is going to come together when this kicks off here in a few weeks, but it might be enough to get started on a series, then independent feature(s) running a common story line.”
Allen was out of town over the holidays and didn’t respond to Crowley’s e-mail until Jan. 8. By then the family was dead.
The three bodies were found by a neighbor Saturday afternoon in the living room of their home in the 1000 block of Ramsdell Drive in Apple Valley. They had been there for up to four weeks; no one had talked to them since before Christmas.
The medical examiner’s office said the deaths of Komel Crowley, 29, and Rani were homicide; David Crowley’s death was suicide.
Mason Hendricks, one of David Crowley’s best friends, said earlier in the week that his friend left a two-sentence note that doesn’t explain anything. Hendricks wouldn’t say what the note contained.
Meanwhile, Crowley’s friends and brother, Dan, have started a fund for Komel Crowley’s family in Texas, which is struggling with her mother’s terminal cancer and medical bills. The fund is set up at www.gofundme.com/kjrrqw.
Dan Crowley wrote, in part, on the page, “Right now, this is a time of darkness in the lives of our families, but your love is shining through and good will triumph because of it. And now, friends, for those of you who have generously offered help, I finally have a way for you to do so.”
As of 6 p.m. Wednesday, donations totaled $1,320.
Pat Pheifer • 952-746-3284