Manhunt for shooting horror suspect

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Published: Tuesday 16th December 2014 by The News Editor

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Police hunting a man suspected of going to three houses and shooting dead six people, including his ex-wife and her 14-year-old niece, do not know where he is or how he is getting around, a prosecutor says.

Officers recovered the phone and car of Bradley Stone, who had recently been in court fighting with his ex-wife over custody of their two children.

Elite police teams surrounded his home in Pennsburg, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Philadelphia, and pleaded through a loudspeaker for him to surrender, but Montgomery County district attorney Risa Ferman said it was unclear if he was there.

“As I stand here right now, we do not know where he is,” she told an evening news briefing.

The shooting rampage started before dawn at the home of Stone’s former sister-in-law in Souderton and ended about 90 minutes later at ex-wife Nicole Stone’s apartment in nearby Harleysville, Ms Ferman said.

Ms Stone’s sister Patricia Flick, her husband Aaron and the couple’s 14-year-old daughter Nina were killed in the first wave of violence, which was not discovered until just before 8am, Ms Ferman said.

Their 17-year-old son Anthony was pulled from the home with a head wound at around 12.30pm and taken in an armoured vehicle and then by helicopter to a Philadelphia hospital.

Ms Stone’s mother Joanne Hill and grandmother Patricia Hill were killed next at their home in nearby Lansdale. Investigators were alerted by a hang-up call to emergency dispatchers, Ms Ferman said.

Ms Stone’s neighbours at the Pheasant Run Apartments in Harleysville said they were woken at around 5am by the sounds of breaking glass and gunshots coming from her apartment. They said they saw Stone fleeing with their two children and alerted authorities.

“She would tell anybody who would listen that he was going to kill her and that she was really afraid for her life,” neighbour Evan Weron said.

The two children Stone took from his ex-wife’s house were safe, Ms Ferman said. She did not say what weapon or weapons were used.

Stone, who is white, was probably wearing military fatigues and was known to use a stick or walker, but it was possible he did not need them, Ms Ferman said.

Harleysville, Lansdale and Souderton are within a few miles of each other. Police with armoured vehicles and rifles moved to Pennsburg after spending several hours outside the home in Souderton where several victims were found.

Several school districts ordered pupils and teachers to shelter in place.

Brad and Nicole Stone married in 2004 and filed for divorce in March 2009, according to court records.

Brad Stone, 35, remarried last year, according to records. Nicole Stone, 33, became engaged over the summer, neighbors said.

The former had couple sparred over custody of their two children, with Brad Stone filing an emergency petition on December 5 and Nicole Stone responding with a counter-claim on December 9. The outcome of their dispute was unclear.

Ms Weron said Stone was a military veteran. He was a barman at the American Legion hall in Lansdale and court records show he recently faced several drink-driving charges, one of which was handled in veterans’ court.

Published: Tuesday 16th December 2014 by The News Editor

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