'Absolutely heartbreaking': Ex-wife of retired DPS trooper who shot, killed 2 victims in Elgin speaks out

Authorities have now identified the victims of a double homicide at a home in Elgin.

FOX 7 learned new details about the deceased suspect, retired DPS trooper Rito Paul Morales, from his ex-wife.

"It's absolutely heartbreaking," said Sheakell Soto, who was formerly married to Paul Morales. "I feel absolutely terrible for them and their family. I can't imagine."

Tuesday night, the Texas Department of Public Safety identified the two women they say were murdered by Morales. His wife, Kristin Morales, and Randi Mitchell, were shot to death at the home the three shared on Bexar Forest Cove. 

Paul Morales was shot and killed at the scene by a Travis County Sheriff’s Deputy.

RELATED STORY: Retired DPS trooper dies in standoff after allegedly killing his wife and 1 other person

"I definitely was shocked," said Soto. "But then at the same time, it doesn't surprise me because of his past actions with me. And I know with his first wife as well," said Soto.

Soto and Morales met when she was just 17 years old, and they married a year later.

"When we first were together, it was everything I wanted," said Soto.

She says he "groomed her" as a victim in an abusive and sometimes violent relationship when they lived in Alton near Lubbock.

"He really started to change. The cops would come out to our place constantly. However, they were his friends," she said. "They covered for him."

Soto says Morales had a bad temper and a collection of guns, a combination that almost turned deadly.

"There was an incident that he got an AR-15 and pointed it at me. And I was standing by our fridge. And his utility weapon, which was a nine-millimeter, was on our fridge. And I grabbed it and I pointed it back at him. And I firmly believe that if I hadn't pointed it back at him, that he would have probably killed me that day," said Soto.

By 2010, Soto and Morales’ divorce was finalized. She says she wanted a restraining order, but that would have meant he’d lose his DPS job.

"The agreement was that he was to be transferred out of the area I lived in Texas, and he went down south. And so basically he got a promotion for being a domestic violence perpetrator," said Morales.

Soto says Paul Morales was already dating Kristin, whom he would later marry, when he was transferred to work at the Capitol in Austin. Randi Mitchell later moved in with the Morales at their home in Elgin.

"He opened up the marriage, brought her in, and then they were leaving him. You know, they decided they wanted to break off from him," said Soto.


Soto says that development likely led Paul Morales to kill the two women on Saturday.  

"Most definitely. Because I know that when we were together, if he even thought that I looked at somebody else, it was a problem," said Soto.

Soto says she believes the killing could have been prevented if police had taken action years earlier.

"When I complained years ago, nobody listened," said Soto. "Maybe he would have gone to jail and not had access to firearms."

Soto thanks God she was able to walk away.

"Now I look at it, and I'm like, God literally saved my life and I just didn't know it. I didn't understand that all that pain that I was going through was helping me not become a victim," said Soto.

If you are in an abusive relationship and need help, you can contact the SAFE Alliance by visiting safeaustin.org/chat, call 512-267-SAFE (7233) or text 737-888-SAFE (7233). Also, the Texas Council on Family Violence connects survivors with local agencies that can provide help. For more information, visit https://tcfv.org