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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk
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    12.11.17 @ 04:37 PM
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    Gunman ambushes, kills two firefighters at New York blaze

    A man convicted of killing his grandmother decades ago allegedly ambushed firefighters on Monday, fatally shooting two of them as they arrived to battle a blaze in upstate New York, police said.



    Two other firefighters were wounded in the attack in the Rochester-area town of Webster. Investigators believe the suspect, William Spengler, 62, deliberately lured them to a house fire, Webster Police Chief Gerald Pickering said.

    Authorities do not know how Spengler, who died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound at the scene, obtained the weapon he used in Monday's shooting or why he opened fire, Pickering told reporters.

    Spengler was convicted in 1981 of first-degree manslaughter in the death of his grandmother and had been released on supervised parole, Pickering said.

    "It is possible that a sister of Mr. Spengler is unaccounted for," Pickering said, adding that her last known address was at the residence where the shooting occurred.

    For more than three hours on Monday, the threat of gunfire stopped firefighters from battling the blaze and forced police SWAT teams to evacuate 33 people in the neighborhood of small waterfront homes.

    Seven houses were destroyed in the fire and it was unclear if everyone had been evacuated safely.

    "I'm hoping that everyone was able to escape from the inferno," Pickering said. "Those houses were close together."

    "For the last 20 years we have been turning people loose and de-institutionalizing people, and I think we've swung too far," Pickering said. "I think there are still people that need to be in institutions that are a danger to themselves or others. And this is a classic example."

    Pickering said two firefighters died at the scene. The two injured firefighters were hospitalized in intensive care, officials said. An off-duty police officer passing by the area also suffered shrapnel wounds, Pickering said.

    "It does appear that it was a trap that was set," said Pickering, who choked back tears as he talked about the firefighters who were killed. One of them, Lt. Michael Chiapperini, was also a police lieutenant with about 20 years on the force, he said.

    "We are a safe community, and to have tragedy befall us like this is just tremendous. ... You know, these people get up in the middle of the night to go put out fire," he said. "They don't expect to be shot and killed."

    "The firefighters who responded today were performing a selfless, meaningful service to their community, unaware that a cold-hearted maniac was planning to ambush them and take their lives," said Harold Schaitberger, general president of the Washington-based International Association of Fire Fighters. "Coming on the heels of the horrific tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut, and on Christmas Eve, this shooting is even harder to comprehend."

    New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo described the Webster shooting as "horrific." And the state's attorney general called it a "senseless tragedy"

    "As this investigation unfolds, we stand with our partners in law enforcement to ensure that lethal weapons are out of the hands of dangerous people, so that brave New Yorkers who risk their lives every day to protect us are not exposed to additional danger," Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman said in a statement.

    Firefighters first arrived at the Webster fire before 6 a.m., said Rob Boutillier, the town's fire marshal.

    One firefighter escaped from the scene in his own vehicle about an hour after he was shot and was taken to a hospital by an ambulance from another location, Boutillier said. Another wounded firefighter was conscious and speaking when he was removed from the scene, he said.

    The wounded firefighters were in intensive care Monday at Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, New York, officials said.

    It was unclear what type of weapon was used in the Webster shooting.

    "I know that many people are going to be asking, 'Were they assault rifles?' " I don't know that. I can't answer that at this time," Pickering told reporters.
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack. -- Gen. George S. Patton

  2. #2
    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    Not to get to far off topic, but this guy served only 17 years for manslaughter, convicted in 1980 of beating his grandmother to death with a hammer. The mandatory minimum sentence (under NY's "Rockefeller" laws) in 1980 for, say, cocaine in 1980 was 15-to-life.

    In the meantime, Budweiser sponsors every major event and having an unopened bottle of alcohol on you is no problem--yet it's basically the same "crime". NY repealed the Rockefeller laws, but prison overcrowding is why violent criminals don't serve the time they should be serving.

    Sorry, but the sentence for beating someone to death with a hammer shouldn't be 17 years.

    With this event, mental health will be discussed, as will gun control. But no one wants to talk about the silly drug laws that, in my area, are causing the mass early releases of felons as well as pleas of felonious crimes down to misdemeanors because the jails have no room.

    We're really stupid.

  3. #3
    Forum Frontman fudd's Avatar
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    Ill tell you what, this gun control conversation can't come fast enough. Shit like this keeps making it all but an inevitability.

  4. #4
    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
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    I'm with lovemachine on this. If this piece of shit was still rotting in a cell then none of this happens. Another example of govt failing at its most important job - protecting law abiding citizens.

  5. #5
    carpe damn diem billy007's Avatar
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    12.17.17 @ 08:18 AM
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    Or if they'd strapped his happy ass in a chair and submitted him to some high voltage,then he'd never have had the chance to kill again.

  6. #6
    Atomic Punk
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    12.11.17 @ 04:37 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by billy007 View Post
    Or if they'd strapped his happy ass in a chair and submitted him to some high voltage,then he'd never have had the chance to kill again.
    Bada Bing!
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack. -- Gen. George S. Patton

  7. #7
    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    Eh, I'm against capital punishment. To me, it is only necessary during legitimate war or when someone poses an immediate threat to oneself or others. Otherwise, we can just lock them up for a real long time.

    But that's a whole different subject, haha.

  8. #8
    Hang 'Em High Hurricane Halen's Avatar
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    RIP brothers!!!

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  9. #9
    Atomic Punk
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    12.11.17 @ 04:37 PM
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    Seven weeks ago, Michael Chiapperini was in Long Island, helping those suffering after Superstorm Sandy. Two weeks ago, he was named "Firefighter of the Year" for his department in his upstate New York town of Webster.

    Monday, he was dead.

    A gunman -- later identified as William Spengler, 62 -- apparently set his home ablaze, took up a position on a nearby berm, then shot and killed Chiapperini and fellow firefighter Tomasz Kaczowka. Two other firefighters were wounded, as was an off-duty police officer who was driving through the area.

    Why Spengler, an ex-felon who killed his grandmother in 1980, committed these crimes is unknown.

    But authorities say there's no doubt about the quality of the people he killed on Christmas Eve.

    "We work with these people everyday, they're like our brothers," Webster Police Chief Gerald Pickering said of the firefighters shot. "It's terrible."

    "These guys are all heroes."

    Until Monday, Chiapperini was the person reporters would talk to about killings and other crimes. For the past two decades, he had been a member of the Webster Police Department, rising to the rank of lieutenant and serving as a spokesman.

    He was promoted in August 2010, telling the hometown Webster Post, "I want to learn more about the administrative operations of the police department." The paper noted Chiapperini was a decorated police officer who had risen up through the ranks and was married with three children.

    Chiapperini served his community outside of the police force.

    As a volunteer, he also played an active part in the West Webster Fire Department -- one of three such departments in Webster, a town of about 43,000 people located about 10 miles east of Rochester.

    "He's held every line office that the department has had" including chief, fire department spokesman Al Sienkiewicz said.

    That includes a hands-on role in the department's Explorer program that encourages high school students to learn about firefighting and perhaps become volunteers themselves.

    Chiapperini was also active on the front lines of fires, with his efforts in specific incidents earning him the department's "Firefighter of the Year" award earlier this month, Sienkiewicz said.

    Service was a way of life for Chiapperini. For example, around Halloween, he and other firefighters from northern New York headed to Long Island to assist in recovery efforts in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy.

    "He'd been down in Suffolk County to see the destruction, (then) he loses his life this morning, responding to help someone," Lt. Gov. Bob Duffy told reporters Monday in Webster.

    "When you start looking at the two who lost their lives and the two that are fighting for their lives, (all are) just tremendous public servants."
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack. -- Gen. George S. Patton

  10. #10
    Atomic Punk ZeoBandit's Avatar
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    Unbelievable.

    RIP firefighters.
    "What we are dealing with here, is a complete lack of respect for the law" - Jackie Gleason, Smokey and the Bandit

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  11. #11
    Atomic Punk
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    12.11.17 @ 04:37 PM
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    A firefighter shot by a sniper in upstate New York calmly described his wounds as "eventually mortal" unless he got medical help soon, although paramedics were kept away because the shooter could still be near Monday morning.

    "Be advised I am struck in the lower leg, knee area, and the lower left back," volunteer firefighter Theodore Scardino told a Monroe County, New York, dispatcher as he used his firetruck for cover Monday morning.

    "Brother, hang tight," the dispatcher told Scardino.

    Two firefighters lay dead on the street near Scardino, not moving since they were shot, he said.

    "I am in the danger zone right now," Scardino radioed. "I need EMS or I'm going to be joining them."

    The recorded emergency radio traffic from the incident is archived at the website radioreference.com.

    The shots came across the street from the burning house and car that were set on fire by the shooter, 62-year-old William Spengler, police said. He was aiming at a West Webster Fire Department truck that answered his call to 911, they said.

    But ambulances were kept away because police didn't know if the shooter was still there, hidden behind a tree on a hill above.

    While he waited and bled, Scardino made a request. "Is it possible to notify my next of kin and apprise of the situation? I have a hysterical mother."

    With the help of two residents of the neighborhood, Scardino eventually left the scene in his Chevy Trailblazer, the vehicle he drove there in response to the initial fire call 35 minutes earlier.

    Spengler, who was convicted of killing his grandmother decades ago, was found dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound hours later.

    Scardino and firefighter Joseph Hofstetter survived their gunshot wounds and were "convalescing and doing as well as I would expect at this stage," a doctor at University of Rochester Hospital said Wednesday.

    "Mr. Scardino and Mr. Hofstetter are both receiving supportive care and are making small steps on their long road ahead," Dr. Nicole Stassen, a trauma surgeon said. "It is critical that they remain in an environment where they can focus on rest and recovery."

    The men will start physical therapy Wednesday and their conditions should be upgraded to "satisfactory" later in the day, Stassen said.

    Contacted by CNN by e-mail, Spengler's cousin, Shirley Ashwood, responded in an e-mail that her family had distanced itself from him after he killed his grandmother. She had only seen him in the past year while visiting her aunt and briefly at the funeral.

    He should have stayed in prison, she wrote.

    "The system failed all of us again," she said, adding that her family grieved for the fallen firefighters -- one of whom her two daughters knew from school -- and Cheryl Spengler.
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack. -- Gen. George S. Patton

  12. #12
    Atomic Punk Dave's Dreidel's Avatar
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    Now gun control advocates will scream "we need more gun laws so this doesn't happen!"

    What they fail to realize, that as a convicted felon, it is illegal for him to own a gun anyway, so he alone or in combination with others broke the existing gun laws to get the gun and the ammo.

    Criminals don't obey gun laws, therefore just having more of them won't change anything except take them out of the hands of responsible citizens.
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  13. #13
    Unchained gavs5150's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave's Dreidel View Post
    Now gun control advocates will scream "we need more gun laws so this doesn't happen!"

    What they fail to realize, that as a convicted felon, it is illegal for him to own a gun anyway, so he alone or in combination with others broke the existing gun laws to get the gun and the ammo.

    Criminals don't obey gun laws, therefore just having more of them won't change anything except take them out of the hands of responsible citizens.
    Why do you hate firemen and children DD?

  14. #14
    Atomic Punk Dave's Dreidel's Avatar
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    I know, I'm the devil, heaven forbid as a society we look at the facts before jumping to conclusions.
    Taylor Swift is nice to look at. Adele can sing.

    Emperor Brett - "I can't believe you guys are analyzing song-by-song Van Halen III? What next, analyzing the script of Stroker Ace looking for some shred of Citizen Kane?"

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  15. #15
    Hang 'Em High RRMB's Avatar
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    NY woman arrested in connection with slaying of 2



    WEBSTER, N.Y. (AP) A 24-year-old woman was arrested Friday and charged in connection with the Christmas Eve ambush slaying of two volunteer firefighters responding to a house fire in upstate New York.
    Dawn Nguyen of Rochester faces a state charge of filing a falsified business record, State Police Senior Investigator James Sewell said. Nguyen also faces a federal charge; a news conference with the U.S. attorney in western New York was scheduled for 4 p.m. Friday.

    Sewell said the state charge is connected to the purchase of an AR-15 semiautomatic rifle and a 12-gauge shotgun that William Spengler had with him Monday when firefighters Michael Chiapperini and Tomasz Kaczowka were gunned down. Three other people were wounded before the 62-year-old Spengler killed himself. He also had a .38-caliber revolver, but Nguyen is not connected to that gun, Sewell said.

    The .223-caliber Bushmaster rifle, which had a combat-style flash suppressor, is similar to the one used by the gunman who massacred 20 children and six women in a Newtown, Conn., elementary school earlier this month.

    Nguyen and her mother, Dawn Welsher, lived next door to Spengler in 2008. On Wednesday and again on Friday, shortly before her arrest, she answered her cellphone and told The Associated Press that she didn't want to talk about Spengler. Her brother, Steven Nguyen, told the Democrat and Chronicle newspaper of Rochester that Spengler stole the guns from Dawn Nguyen.

    A number listed in the name of her lawyer, David Palmiere, was disconnected.

    Spengler set a car on fire and touched off an inferno in his Webster home on a strip of land along the Lake Ontario shore, took up a sniper's position and opened fire on the first firefighters to arrive at about 5:30 a.m. on Christmas Eve, authorities said. He wounded two other firefighters and an off-duty police officer who was on his way to work.

    A Webster police officer who had accompanied the firefighters shot back at Spengler with a rifle in a brief exchange of gunfire before the gunman killed himself.

    Spengler spent 17 years in prison for killing his grandmother in 1980 and was barred from possessing weapons as a convicted felon.

    Investigators still haven't released the identity of remains found in William Spengler's burned house. They have said they believe the remains are those of his 67-year-old sister, Cheryl Spengler, who also lived in the house near Rochester and has been unaccounted for since the killings. The Spengler siblings had lived in the home with their mother, Arline Spengler, who died in October. In all, seven houses were destroyed by the flames.


    Investigators found a rambling, typed letter laying out Spengler's intention to destroy his neighborhood and "do what I like doing best, killing people."
    He had been released from parole in 2006 on the manslaughter conviction, and authorities said they had had no encounters with him since.


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