San Diego police say woman's death ruled homicide, husband found dead

SAN DIEGO - A high school teacher's aide whose body was found in her Carmel Mountain apartment last week -- four days before her estranged husband turned up dead of an apparent suicide -- was the victim of a homicide, authorities disclosed Tuesday.

San Diego police discovered the body of Lori Hughes, 51, in her rental residence in the 11700 block of Stoney Peak Drive on Thursday morning while checking on her at the request of a concerned friend.

An autopsy determined that she had been strangled, SDPD Sgt. Manuel Del Toro said.

The victim's husband, 49-year-old Daniel Hood, was considered a "person of interest" and was scheduled to be interviewed by detectives this week about her death. But on Monday, he was found dead at his Rancho Penasquitos home.

"Homicide investigators responded to the scene, and it was determined his death was an apparent suicide," Del Toro said.

The couple had separated in January following 14 years of marriage, according to police.

Hughes was employed as a special-education instructional assistant at Mount Carmel High School, according to co-workers.

10News contacted the school, which referred us to the Poway Unified School District. A representative sent 10News the following statement:

"We are deeply saddened and distressed by the details of Lori's passing released today. Lori was loved by her school and our District community and our sincere sympathies go out to her family and friends during this unbelievably painful time."

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