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Man charged with killing 4 family members, dog

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SANTA BARBARA, Calif. » A central California man whom authorities say confessed to stabbing his elderly father and mother, his two sons and the family dog has been charged with murder and animal cruelty.

Santa Barbara County prosecutors announced Tuesday that a grand jury indicted 45-year-old Nicolas Holzer on felony charges that include special allegations. Prosecutors haven’t decided whether to seek the death penalty.

Holzer remains jailed without bail.

Prosecutors contend that in August at his Goleta home, Holzer grabbed kitchen knives and attacked his 73-year-old father; then his sons, ages 10 and 13, as they slept; then his 74-year-old mother and the family dog.

Authorities say Holzer then called 911 to report killing his family.

Authorities say Holzer, who had no criminal history, told detectives that the killings were his destiny.

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