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Harford man shot by trooper after alleged shotgun threat

ShootingsFirearmsMaryland State PoliceSuicideR Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center

Maryland State Police say an armed suspect sustained a non-life threatening gunshot wound Monday after he allegedly pointed a shotgun at a trooper responding to an attempted suicide call at the man's northern Harford County residence.

The wounded man has been identified as John E. Murphy, 52, of the 4100 block of Norrisville Road in the White Hall ZIP Code. The house is near the Madonna crossroads.

According to a state police news release issued shortly after 9 p.m. Monday, Murphy was receiving treatment for a gunshot wound to the shoulder at Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore. He was in serious condition Tuesday afternoon.

Troopers from the Bel Air Barrack were dispatched to the residence for a possible armed suicidal person shortly after 1:30 p.m. Monday. The news release states that Gail Isennock called 911, advising her boyfriend was in the residence with a firearm stating he wanted to be killed by police.

When troopers arrived, they were contacted outside the residence by Isennock, according to the release. Troopers confirmed the information and attempted to establish a perimeter around the residence.

The suspect went out the rear of the residence and allegedly pointed a shotgun at one of the responding troopers, the news release states. In fear for his life, the trooper fired his shotgun and hit Murphy in the left shoulder and left arm.

"One person [is] being treated for extremity injuries by EMS," the Harford County Fire and EMS Association posted on its official Facebook page shortly after the shooting.

According to the preliminary investigation, the trooper, who was in full uniform, immediately identified himself and gave commands ordering Murphy to put down his shotgun and surrender, state police said.

"Murphy refused and pointed the shotgun at the trooper," the state police news release says. "In fear for his life, TFC Quinn Dobbins fired one shot from his departmental approved 12 gauge shotgun."

EMS personnel were summoned to the scene and Murphy was transported by the Jarrettsville Volunteer Fire Company ambulance to a shock trauma center, according to the news release.

Troopers remained on the scene of the shooting late into Monday afternoon.

According to the news release, state police investigators obtained a search warrant for the residence.

State police crime scene technicians processed the house and the yard for evidence. A .410 bolt action shotgun was recovered from the ground where the suspect was standing near the residence, state police said.

Investigators from the Maryland State Police Homicide Unit responded and are conducting the investigation, which is procedure in police involved shootings, according to the release. They will be reviewing evidence developed in this investigation with the Harford County State's Attorney's Office to determine what criminal charges, if any, will be filed against Murphy in connection with Monday's incident.

State police also said investigators will present the state's attorney's office with their completed investigation for review, which is procedure in police involved shootings.

According to state police, Dobbins, an eight-year veteran of the agency, has been placed on routine administrative leave, which also is procedure in police involved shootings. The state police Internal Affairs Unit will also be conducting an investigation.

Check back with exploreharford.com for updates.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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