ATHENS - Two men are dead after they attempted a home invasion Sunday afternoon, according to a press release from the Henderson County Sheriff's Office.
The attempted robbery happened on Hopson Drive east of Athens.
“It was a home invasion and attempted robbery that went very bad,” said Sheriff Botie Hillhouse.
The homeowners suffered minor injuries.
Hillhouse identified the suspects as Steven Kelley, 49, and Cecil Spain, 31.
The sheriff said Kelley and Spain met the homeowners online -- acting as if they wanted to buy a dog from them.
Armed with handguns, the sheriff said the suspects spent more than an hour with the couple at their home Sunday before restraining and attempting to rob them.
However, one of the residents shot and killed both men.
The sheriff said one of the suspects used a fake name while seeking out the victims online.
"I think it's safer a lot of times for people to meet somebody they don't know that they're talking to and communicating with, in a public place away from their homes," he said.
A judge ordered autopsies for Kelley and Spain.
The sheriff's office continues its investigation along with help from the Texas Rangers and Henderson County District Attorney's Office.
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