Two Members of "Wife Swap" Family Shot Dead By Third Member

Stockdale Family

(Stark County) – A double murder and attempted suicide in Stark County involves a family that performs bluegrass music, and has been featured in the ABC-TV show “Wife Swap.”

21-year-old James Stockdale and his mother, 54-year-old Kathryn Stockdale, were found dead in their home in Beach City on Thursday.  James is a member of The Stockdale Family Band.

Stark County Sheriff George Maier says 25-year-old Jacob Stockdale fired a shotgun at his brother and mother, then turned the gun on himself.  Jacob survived, and the sheriff says he was taken to MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland.

Sheriff’s deputies were called to the family’s house at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, where they found the bodies.  Sheriff Maier says he does not yet know what sparked the shotings.

The family’s website says they moved to Bethlehem Township in 1999 to “eat close to the land and to regain our health.”  The musical group has performed across Ohio.

Their web site also says they were featured on the reality show “Wife Swap.”  Kathryn had said for that show “We moved to the country to get the boys away from the city. Our children are being raised away from violent language, sexual influences, drinking, smoking, drugs, rap music all the things we left behind in the city. Instead we are raising our children on a diet of wholesome activities and farm work; keeping their minds pure and their bodies healthy and keeping out the influences of modern society. That is why we home-school.”

(Photos from

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