By CBS Baltimore Staff

TOWSON, Md. (WJZ) — Top Baltimore County officials expressed shock and sadness in their first statements after the murder-suicide deaths of former police officer Robert Vicosa, his daughters Aaminah and Gianna, and Baltimore County Police Sgt. Tia Bynum.

Baltimore County Police Chief Melissa Hyatt on Friday offered her condolences to family, friends and coworkers.

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“The tragedy that occurred yesterday was beyond horrific,” Hyatt said. “This was a selfish and senseless act of violence that has shaken us to our very core.”

Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski said the tragedy was “impossible to comprehend” in a statement released Friday morning.

“All of Baltimore County grieves the senseless loss of Giana and Aaminah, innocent and precious children,” he said. “My heart aches that this world has lost their light. I offer my condolences and prayers to their families and loved ones.”

Vicosa, an ex-Baltimore County cop, was the center of a days-long manhunt that crossed state lines after he allegedly attacked his estranged wife at her Pennsylvania home, taking her captive and fleeing with the couple’s daughters.

The former police officer, who was fired from the Baltimore County Police Department in August, was wanted on several charges including kidnapping, armed carjacking, simple assault, and robbery, according to police.

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Bynum was believed to have been assisting Vicosa in evading law enforcement. She was suspended from duty in response to her involvement in the case.

In a press conference Thursday morning, Hyatt appealed directly to her subordinate to safely return the 6- and 7-year-old girls.

“Tia, our priority is the safety and wellbeing of Gianna and Aaminah. Please, get these two innocent and precious children to a safe location. You can drop them off at a public safety facility or any other safe location with a responsible adult to care for them. Their wellbeing and safety is everyone’s priority. We know that you are tired. We want to work with you on a safe and peaceful resolution.”

But the manhunt came to a tragic end Thursday afternoon in Western Maryland, when a vehicle they were believed to have been traveling in crashed after a police pursuit.

Police opened the passenger-side door and found a Bynum in the driver’s seat and Vicosa with his daughters in the back, all with apparent gunshot wounds in what police described as a murder-suicide.

Vicosa, Bynum, and one child were pronounced dead at the scene. A second child was transported to Meritus Medical Center in Hagerstown, where she was pronounced dead.

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Hyatt said BCPD is investigating a kidnapping and carjacking Vicosa and Bynum allegedly committed in Baltimore County and supporting the investigations ongoing in neighboring jurisdictions.

CBS Baltimore Staff