STATE TROOPER DEAD; KILLER ON THE LOOSE
STAFF REPORT / http://thetimes-tribune.com
Published: September 13, 2014
One state trooper is dead and one is injured in a shooting at the state police barracks in Blooming Grove Twp., Pike County. Authorities are still searching for the suspect or suspects.
State police Commissioner Frank Noonan, addressing the media this morning at 7:05, said, “This has been an emotional night for all of us.”
Flanked by other law enforcement officials, Commissioner Noonan said two state troopers were “ambushed” at 10:50 last night outside the front doors of the state police barracks in Blooming Grove. He confirmed that one trooper was killed and another was injured and taken to Geisinger Medical Center in Scranton where he is in stable condition. Police are not yet releasing the names of the victims. They plan to hold regular updates throughout the day.
Mr. Noonan revealed few details about the investigation but indicated the shooting happened during a shift change as one trooper was leaving the barracks and another arriving when shots were fired.
Law enforcement officials from throughout the northeast part of the state and New York and New Jersey descended upon the region and are assisting in the search for the shooter. Commissioner Noonan said area residents are not under restrictions to stay in their homes but said everyone should be alert. Authorities do not have a description of the shooter but said they are following several leads.
“We can’t say that the situation is completely in hand.,” Commissioner Noonan said. He also said the attack seemed to be directed solely at state police.
Anyone with information is asked to call 911 or the Honesdale state police barracks at 570-253-7126.
Certain roads in the area, including Route 402 will be closed during the investigation.
Overnight, at the Honesdale barracks the mood was somber. Outside was a carved stone monument with a silhouette of a state trooper and the inscription, “Remember the fallen.”
Lackawanna County dispatched its SWAT team Friday night to assist with the shooting, county Communications Supervisor Michael Kelechowa said. Helicopters were seen flying over the area.
A resident of the area said he heard shots near the state police barracks at 434 Route 402, Blooming Grove Twp. A reporter on scene saw a fleet of police vehicles from a wide range of law enforcement departments streaming toward the barracks.
The Blooming Grove station is in a wooded area, surrounded by state game lands, about 6 miles east of Lake Wallenpaupack, nearly 2 miles north of Exit 30 of Interstate 84.
This is the second fatal shooting of a state trooper in Northeast Pennsylvania in the past five years. In 2009, Trooper Joshua Miller, of Pittston Twp., was killed in the line of duty after a high-speed chase ended in a hail of gunfire in Monroe County.