Shooting in upstate New York kills two firefighters

Updated
 

Details are still coming together, but we’ve learned this morning that four firefighters were shot this morning in Webster, N.Y., responding to a large house fire. It appears two of the four firefighters were killed in the shooting, while the other two are being treated at a local hospital.

The suspected shooter has not yet been identified, but local officials have told reporters that he was killed at the scene by a gunshot, though it’s unclear whether the shot was self-inflicted.

Asked about the circumstances, Gerald Pickering, Webster’s police chief, told reporters this morning, “It does appear that a trap was set.” In other words, the shooter set the fire, waited for first responders to reach the scene, and opened fire.

Pickering added, “These people get up in the middle of the night to go put out fires. They don’t expect to be shot and killed.”

With the shooter dead and the police collecting the weapon (or weapons) involved, it is no longer considered an “active shooting” situation, and the house fires are now under control.

Update: The victims in the shooting have been identified. The two firefighters killed were Michael J. Chiapperini, 43, who was also a local police lieutenant, and Tomasz Kaczowka, 19, a 911 dispatcher for Monroe County. Theodore Scardino and Joseph Hofstetter were wounded, and were list in guarded-to-stable condition.

Second Update: The shooter has also been identified as William Spengler, 62, who had a lengthy criminal record, including having pleaded guilty to manslaughter for bludgeoning his 92-year-old grandmother to death with a hammer.

Shooting in upstate New York kills two firefighters

Updated