Two Firefighters Shot Dead, Two Wounded Responding to Fire in Webster, NY (UPDATE: William Spengler ID’d as Shooter, Found Dead, Suicide )
Two firefighters have been shot dead after having responded to a fire early Monday morning in Webster, NY, a suburb of Rochester. It is being reported that two other firefighters have been shot and are in guarded condition at Strong Memorial Hospital. Fire Marshal Rob Boutillier stated that the blaze was allowed to spread to two other houses until the area is secured. The gun man is still at large.
A gunman shot and killed at least two firefighters responding to a house fire at a Rochester suburb early Monday.
Two other firefighters were in guarded condition at Strong Memorial Hospital with gunshot wounds, according to a hospital spokeswoman, The Rochester Democrat and Chronicle reported.
The gunman was still at large at mid-morning. Fire Marshal Rob Boutillier said the blaze was allowed to spread to two other houses until the area is secured.
WHEC-TV reported that by mid-morning firefighters were attacking the blaze, which had spread to three homes and a vehicle.
Could some one have purposely started the fire in order to shoot and kill the fireman who showed to put the blaze out? Sadly, that could be the case.
UPDATE I: CNN …
Authorities believe one or more shooters took aim at the firefighters after they left their vehicles, Police Chief Gerald Pickering said.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo described it as a “horrific shooting” and a “senseless act of violence.”
“Volunteer firefighters and police officers were injured and two were taken from us as they once again answered the call of duty,” he said in a statement.
It was unclear whether there were any suspects.
UPDATE II: Gunman Identified as 62 year old and ex-con William Spengler. The ex-con who served 17 years in prison for the murder of his grandmother was found dead of an apparent suicide. As early suspected, Spengler set a trap for the firemen and then gunned them down when they appeared on the scene to put out the fire that was set.
A man who served nearly 17 years in jail for killing his grandmother set a house and car on fire this morning in upstate New York and then began shooting at emergency personnel who showed up, killing two firefighters, police said.
In all, William Spengler, 62, shot four firefighters, killing two and severely injuring two more after setting his “trap,” police said.
An off-duty police officer from Greece, N.Y., who responded to the scene early in the morning of Christmas Eve also was injured today.
“It was a trap,” said Webster, N.Y., Police Chief Gerald L. Pickering, “set by Mr. Spengler who laid in wait and shot first responders.”