Family friend speaks out about double stabbing in Xenia

55-year-old Winston Sheppard is in jail accused of stabbing his 84-year-old mother Estella Sheppard and 57-year-old sister Ralphael Sheppard.

Anthony Smith has been friends with the Sheppard family for over 40 years.

“Good people, they honest people, they just wanted to help you out, look out for you and everything,” he said. “No one knows what goes on behind closed doors but obviously something was building up in him.”

>> RELATED: Father of man accused of fatally stabbing mother, sister in Xenia died last week

Smith said Winston lost his father to lung cancer the week before. When Smith arrived at the Sheppards’ home, he said Winston had been drinking and arguing with Estella and Ralphael.

“The discussion was you’re not supposed to be drinking. If dad was here you wouldn’t be drinking. Ms. Sheppard said this is my house, if you don’t like what’s going on here you can leave.” 

Smith said he didn’t realize Winston was stabbing his own mother, and after she fell to the floor, Winston went after his sister.

“I thought he was poking her (Estella). I saw the knife coming out of her, I tripped out and yelled at him, what the hell are you doing,” he said. “I came from behind, I’m yelling at Winston. I grab him by the shoulders, I’m like what the hell are you doing and he shrugs me off. I take a couple steps back and he proceeds to follow her (Ralphael) to the corridor and the garage.”

>> RELATED: Xenia man charged with murder in stabbing deaths of mother, sister

Smith said he tried to help Estella when Winston returned to the kitchen.

“Winston comes back, sits down at the table, puts the knife on the counter, ‘Call the police smitty,’ he said.

Smith has had problems sleeping since the murders and is second-guessing how he handled it, but one question is still unanswered.

“I just want to know what was going through his head,” he said.

>> WEATHER: Flights between Dayton and Charlotte, NC cancelled due to snowstorm

Capt. Alonzo Wilson of the Xenia Police Division said they are still working to find out what led to the stabbing, “but it’s basically a domestic violence incident that escalated into this tragedy.”

Winston Sheppard is charged with two counts of murder and felonious assault. His bond is set for $1 million.