Friend of wife killed by husband in Brooklyn Cracker Barrel shooting says shooter was abusive

BROOKLYN, Ohio - The man police gunned down after a shooting rampage that left his wife and daughter dead, and another in critical condition, has been called abusive by a family friend.

Lisa Schneider said she went to school with 42-year-old Katherina (Kate) Allen of Strongsville. She said they've been friend since then, so she also got to know Allens' 51-year-old husband, Kevin Allen -- the man police said gunned down his wife and 10-year-old daughter, Kerri, inside the Cracker Barrel at 5100 Tiedeman Road last week. He also shot the surviving daughter, 10-year-old Kayla Allen, who is in critical condition at MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland.

Schneider said she would often baby sit the couple's daughters. During those times, she said she would encounter Kevin Allen, who she described as weird and abusive.

"Her husband was psycho, yes I knew, he was just very, very mentally abusive to her," said Schneider, "I knew them and I babysat for them, he wasn't right."

Meanwhile at Chapman Elementary School in Strongsville, grief counselors are helping the girl's classmates cope with this tragic loss.

"It's something you hope you don't have to deal with this really is something that doesn't happen often," explained Principal Andy Trujillo. "The exact details of this event that's why it's captured everybody's attention locally and nationally because it's something you don't see, it violates every instinctual thought we have as adults and parents."

Trujillo said that makes this situation even harder to deal with and explain, but he said the best way they have found to deal with it is honestly.

"You just have to tell them the truth and let them feel what they feel," he said.

For Schneider, who has known Katherina for more than 20 years, this is heartbreaking. She said although she knew Kevin Allen's character was questionable, she had no idea he was capable of something like this.

"I didn't think he'd ever do this, who thinks this, this is terrible," she said.

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