Wapato Art Teacher Found Dead



A grey cloud hangs over Wapato Middle School today, both figuratively and literally.

This morning, school staff was informed one of its art teachers, Desiree Sunford was killed last night.

"It's kind of like losing a child, these are my people and these are my staff members, and I love them dearly," said Superintendent Becky Imler, "To lose one of them is very-very hard."

Yakima sheriff's deputies say the 30-year-old was found dead in her home in Moxee on the 300 block of North sSaint Hilaire Road.

Sunford's husband, who was out of town, asked deputies to check on her after not hearing from his wife for almost a day.

Deputies say Sunford suffered numerous gunshot wounds.

When Sunford's husband arrived, deputies took him back to the office to be interviewed, and has since then been released.

So far no suspects have been named.

"Of course, some of the things that we will obviously do is take the time to verify his story, and also follow up on whatever leads he might have provided in the course of that interview," said Chief of Detectives, Stewart Graham.

And while deputies work to solve Sunford's death, the Wapato School District says it's offering help for those who may have known her.

"If they're seeing a student who is needing to speak with a counselor or is very distraught, or not handling it in a way that concerns  the parent; give the middle school a call," said Imler, "We want to be sure to get the student connected with our counseling."

If you have any information regarding the investigation, you can contact the Yakima Sheriff's Office or dial 9-1-1.