WPVI-TV reports that a gunman is barricaded in a house in Souderton, Pa., a suburb of Philadelphia. Police were called after two people were found dead in a home. Three others were found shot to death in two other locations. (Dec. 15)
Six family members were killed and one was seriously wounded in shootings at three locations in suburban Philadelphia, and a manhunt was underway for a former U.S. Marine, authorities in Montgomery County said Monday.
One of the dead was the suspected gunman’s ex-wife, Nicole Hill Stone, with whom he had battled over custody of their two daughters.
Police were looking for Bradley William Stone, 35, of Pennsburg, the county district attorney’s office said. Authorities said that the shootings appeared to be related to a domestic dispute and that all the victims had a “familial relationship” with Stone.
Other victims were members of Hill’s family, including her grandmother, her sister, Patricia Flick, her husband and their 14-year-old daughter. The couple’s 17-year-old son was seriously wounded.
“Stone should be considered armed and dangerous,” District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman said in a statement.”Police are conducting an extensive search in and around Pennsburg.”
Monday night, a suspect matching Stone’s description reportedly was involved in an attempted carjacking in nearby Doylestown, in Bucks County. The driver fired at the suspect, who fled into woods, according to WPVI-TV. The suspect was armed with a knife and wearing camouflage.
Monday morning, police converged on a home in Pennsburg, about 30 miles northwest of Philadelphia, and were using a megaphone to try and draw Stone out.
“Bradley, this is the police department!” an officer yelled. “Come to the front door with your hands up. You’re under arrest.”
Ferman said Stone is known to use a cane or walker to assist him.
About 3 p.m., WPVI-TV reported that police had fired flash-bang grenades and tear gas into the home. But the manhunt continued into the evening, and Stone’s whereabouts were unknown.
Earlier, the station reported that police had found the suspect’s vehicle, and the station tweeted that a gunman was “barricaded” in a house in the town of Souderton, where three people were found dead.
Just before noon, an apparent concussion grenade exploded and an unidentified male was removed from the home and taken by ambulance to a medical helicopter, Philly.com reported, citing Towamencin Township Police Chief Tim Dickinson.
Investigators said they believe the family were the first to be shot, about 3:30 a.m.
Souderton School District issued a notice on its website that its schools were in lockdown.
In nearby Lansdale, dispatchers said a SWAT team responded. Officers searched nearby buildings but, after three hours, police drew back from the scene without announcing anything about the shooting suspect, nbcphiladelphia.com reported.
Monday evening, police said Hill’s 57-year-old mother and her 75-year-old grandmother had been shot to death inside about 4:30 a.m..
A resident at Hill’s Lower Salford Township apartment complex told TV stations she heard gunshots just before 5 a.m. and saw the suspect leave with Hill’s two children.
“I opened the window and I asked him ‘Is everything OK?’ He just looked at me and said, ‘She’s hurt pretty bad. We have to leave. She’s hurt.’ And he just got in the car and left,” the unidentified neighbor said.
Police later found the 33-year-old Hill dead inside the apartment, and the children were found safe at a neighbor’s home, the stations reported, citing sources.
Hill and Stone married in 2004 and filed for divorce in March 2009, the Associated Press reported, citing court records. Their divorce was finalized in December 2012.
Stone remarried last year, and neighbors said Hill became engaged over the summer. They had been in court earlier this month, with Stone filing an emergency petition for custody of their children.
He served more than eight years in the Marine Corps Reserve and had been deployed to Iraq as an “Artillery Meteorological Man,” a Marine Corps spokesman told WCAU-TV, the NBC affiliate in Philadelphia.
Court records show that Stone suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder, the Bucks County Courier Timesreported.
He served in the Marines and the Marine Reserves from 2002 to 2011, including a combat tour in Iraq in 2008. He was discharged honorably.
Stone was treated for unspecified combat-related physical injuries, and was also receiving continuing treatment for PTSD, the Montgomery County records show. Stone pleaded guilty in November 2013 to a drunken-driving crash. As part of his sentence, he was participating in a county rehabilitation program for veterans.
Contributing: The Associated Press
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