Officers fatally shot a man and woman on a motel balcony Tuesday when they refused to drop BB guns they had raised toward police who were there to serve warrants, Maryland State Police said.
No officers were hurt during the confrontation Tuesday at the New Eastern Inn in Elkton, state police spokesman Greg Shipley said. Police initially said the two were carrying handguns, but later said they were determined to be BB guns.
"The Delaware State Police had contacted Maryland State Police yesterday, requesting assistance in the location of these two fugitives," Shipley told reporters. "And the state apprehension team took that investigation over and tracked them to this location."
The two were identified as Brandon Jones, 25, and Chelsea M. Porter, 25, both from Dover, Del. The two were wanted on warrants from Delaware State Police for four counts of possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, possession with intent to deliver heroin, possession of heroin, possession with intent to deliver marijuana, and a host of other charges, according to police.
Shipley said uniformed officers from two agencies went to the motel about 10 a.m., knocked on the door of and announced themselves as police officers.
As they shouted at the room's occupants to surrender, one of the officers saw through a window that a man was approaching the door with what looked like a handgun. He said the officers retreated but the man came out and refused to obey their commands to drop the weapon. The man raised the gun at officers and they fired, Shipley said.
He said the woman came out a few seconds later with a similar weapon that she raised. She was also shot after refusing to drop the weapon, Shipley said.
Officials with the Cecil County Sheriff's Office said three of their officers fired their weapons and have been placed on administrative leave, along with a Maryland State Police trooper who also fired.
The shooting brought a large number of police to the area and prompted road closures. Reporters at the scene could see what appeared to be a body on the balcony, covered by a yellow sheet. Both were pronounced dead at the scene, police said.
Delaware State Police Cpl. Jeffrey Hale said his agency had asked Maryland State Police to help find the two, who were wanted in connection with an incident on Oct. 18. Jones had fired one round from a handgun into the air after threatening to shoot someone, Delaware State Police said in a press release Sunday.
The press release said officers had found about 2,100 small bags of heroin and more than two pounds of marijuana at the man's home, along with $2,700 in cash, a .22-caliber rifle and three handguns, one of which had been reported stolen in 2016.
Baltimore Sun reporter Carrie Wells contributed to this report.