Schoolteacher killed in murder-suicide in Petaluma


Police found Kimberly Conover, 43, and her husband, Kevin Conover, 41, both of Petaluma, suffering from gunshot wounds on the sidewalk outside attorney Jeff Zimmerman's office at 10 Keller St. around 2 p.m. Sunday, Petaluma police Lt. Tim Lyons said.

Police initially did not know whether the shooter was still at large, so they dragged the bodies behind patrol cars for safety, Lyons said.

Zimmerman was briefly detained and questioned, and it was determined that Kevin Conover shot his wife and himself, Lyons said. A revolver was recovered at the scene, Lyons said.

This morning, Zimmerman said he could not discuss the shooting or the Conovers' relationship because of attorney-client privilege.

Both were taken to Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital, where Kevin Conover died at 3:08 p.m. and Kimberly Conover died at 9 p.m., according to the Sonoma County coroner's office. Autopsies are scheduled for today.

Police have had prior contacts with the couple and are examining records to see if there had been any previous domestic violence incidents, Lyons said.

"I'm not aware of any arrests," Lyons said.

Kimberly Conover was a second-grade teacher at Meadow Elementary School in the Waugh School District in Petaluma.

District Superintendent Robert Cmelak said Conover had taught at the school for 12 years.

"If you've seen her picture, her smile says it all," Cmelak said this morning. "She has a beautiful smile."

"She was a teacher of teachers and a trainer of teachers in language arts," Cmelak said. "She was a requested teacher. She was loved. It will be very difficult to fill her void."

Waugh School District employees and all of the students' families were contacted Sunday night about the shooting. School and district staff met this morning at 7:30 a.m., and grief counselors are at the school today, Cmelak said.

Conover had 24 students in her class, and two of her four children also attended Meadow Elementary School, Cmelak said. Her children included 2-year-old twins, he said.

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