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Mayor who killed self faced inquiry

Associated Press / July 17, 2010

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COPPELL, Texas — A suburban Dallas mayor who killed herself and apparently her daughter had been at risk of losing her home, and a city manager said he repeated a request for documents related to questionable charges on her city-issued credit card a day before before the fatal shootings.

Investigators found the bodies of Coppell Mayor Jayne Peters, 55, and 19-year-old Corinne Peters at their home Tuesday night. The medical examiner’s office said the mayor committed suicide and that her daughter’s death was a homicide.

Police said Jayne Peters left a note stating that the two were still grieving over the 2008 death of her husband, Donald, from cancer.

City Manager Clay Phillips said he had been trying for months to get receipts from the mayor that would prove the legitimacy of several charges on her city-issued credit card, The Dallas Morning News reported yesterday.

Phillips told the newspaper that he had asked Peters again on Monday to document the charges, and that he then asked the city attorney to investigate the mayor’s credit card use.

The Peters home, appraised at nearly $423,000, had been posted for foreclosure last July, but never made it to auction.

Corinne Peters had been telling friends she was heading to the University of Texas at Austin in the fall, but a UT spokesman said the school had no record of her even applying.

Deputy Police Chief Steve Thomas said the weapon used was a Glock 17 9mm pistol, which he said the mayor borrowed from Cedar Hill Mayor Rob Franke.

A memorial service for Peters and her daughter was held yesterday.

Peters, a contract software developer, had served on the City Council for a decade before being elected mayor in 2009.

Coppell is a city of about 40,000, 15 miles northwest of Dallas.

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