Four Confirmed Deaths after Shootings in Herkimer and Mohawk, New York; Suspect Shot and Killed (UPDATES + VIDEO)
State Police have shot and killed Kurt Myers, the suspect in shootings that killed four people and injured two others in Herkimer and Mohawk, New York.
Shortly before 8 a.m. Thursday, State Police, FBI and a K-9 unit entered the former Glory Days bar in Herkimer where Myers had been in hiding for nearly 16 hours and had at times exchanged fire with police.
Police said in a press conference that Myers was waiting for police on the first floor of the building. Myers shot back at the tactical team, killing a K-9.
Myers was then shot and killed by state police.
The killing ended a long standoff that started Wednesday afternoon after Myers is believed to have shot six people, four of whom killed, at separate locations in Mohawk and Herkimer.
Police say the believe the shootings were at random and that the victims were not targeted.
The attacks started around 9:30 a.m. Wednesday when Myers used a shotgun to kill two people first at John’s Barber Shop on Main St. in Mohawk. He then traveled to Gaffey’s Car Wash on Mohawk Street in Herkimer, where he shot four people, two of whom died.
Those who were killed are Harry M. Montgomery, Michael G. Rancier, Thomas Stefka, and Michael L. Renshaw. Additionally, police say Myers shot John Seymour and Dan Haslauer, both of whom are recovering at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Utica.
Myers fled the shooting scenes in a red jeep with a black top. Police later found that vehicle, but Myers was not there with it.
Police say he set fire to his apartment at 32 South Washington St. in Mohawk shortly before the shootings occurred. There have been no reported injuries from that fire.
Police said they do not know the motivation for Myers’ shooting spree. They continue to treat the building in which Myers was hiding as an active crime scene as they continue their investigation.
Details on Myers’ background are scarce. The only legal trouble he has ever faced came from a DWAI in 1973. He has been described by those who knew him as a quiet and solitary individual, a “loner.”
A running timeline of events is below:
1 p.m.: At least six military-geared officers walked into a residence on Folts St. in Herkimer, following an armored vehicle. After nearly 20 minutes inside and surrounding the home, police stopped investigating that scene, according to reports from Townsquare News Network partner WIBX on the scene.
1:30 p.m.: Gunshots were heard shortly after at a residence near the corner of Green and North Main St. in Herkimer, as of 1:30 p.m. WIBX is reporting that police have surrounded a building on North Main St. and are communicating to someone inside.
Raw Video of Shots Exchanged:
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2:30 p.m.: WIBX, live on the scene, believes that more gunshots were fired as of 2:30 p.m.
2:35 p.m.: The location of Myers is believed to be inside a three-story North Main Street building in Herkimer. Two vehicles near the building have bullet holes in them, according to WIBX.
3 p.m.:James Seward released a statement of condolences to those affected: “My
deepest sympathies go out to the victims, their family members, and friends involved in today’s tragic shooting in Herkimer County. I also extend my thoughts and prayers to the law enforcement officials who put their lives on the line every day, protecting our citizens from those who wish to do harm.”
3:10 p.m.: Authorities have swarmed Glory Days, a Herkimer bar.
3:20 p.m.: Police have resumed communication with what is believed to be the suspect, according to WIBX.
3:35 p.m.: Police used bolt cutters to enter the building.
3:45 p.m.: WIBX’s Bill Keeler says that “aggressive” talks are resuming between police and who is believed to be Myers. Activity continues where Governor Andrew Cuomo is expected to hold a press conference today.
4:25 p.m.: State officials with Governor Andrew Cuomo say they continue to wait for more news from the scene and assess the situation ahead of Cuomo’s press conference.
5 p.m.: During Andrew Cuomo’s press conference, officials offered a timeline of events from earlier today. They say Myers used a shotgun to commit the murders of four people. He shot two more who were injured.
Cuomo urged residents to stay away from the area where police believe Meyers to be holed up in a building near North Main Street and to stay in their homes.
New York State Police Superintendent Joseph D’amico confirmed the identities the victims — Harold Montgomery and Michael Rancier at the barber shop. Thomas Stefka and Michael Renshaw were killed at the car wash location.
D’amico stated that Myers does not have any serious prior convictions. He was once arrested for driving while intoxicated in 1973. Several guns and ammunition were removed from Myers’ apartment, which he allegedly set on fire before beginning his shooting spree.
5:30 p.m.: Myers is still at large, and police believe he is inside a building on North Main St. in Herkimer.
5:45 p.m.: Police released the details below about the six people shot today.
John’s Barber Shop – 4 victims
- Harry M. Montgomery, age 68, from 3 South Washington in the Village of Mohawk was pronounced deceased at the scene.
- Michael G. Rancier, age 57, from 114 Melrose in the Village of Herkimer was pronounced deceased at the scene.
- John Seymour, owner of Barber Shop is listed in critical condition at St. Elizabeths Hospital in Utica, NY
- Dan Haslauer, customer at barber shop, is listed in critical condition from gun shot wounds at St. Elizabeths Hospital in Utica.
Gaffy’s Jiffy Lube – 2 victims
- Thomas Stefka, employee at Gaffy’s.
- Michael L. Renshaw, a 20 year veteran of NYS Corrections.
6:20 p.m.: Police are attempting to contact Myers, believed to be inside a building on North Main St.
6:30 p.m.: WIBX’s Bill Keeler is reporting that the “sharp shooters” are coming off adjacent rooftops.
6:50 p.m.: Police have erected large construction-type lights that are facing the building where Myers is believed to be. New “sharp shooters” have replaced the ones that came down around 6:30 p.m.
8:15 p.m.: There have been no new updates over the last hour.
Pushing 930 and still no action where Kurt Myers is supposedly hiding. Residents are still gathered, waiting. #HerkimerCoShooting
— News Radio 950 WIBX(@WIBXnews) March 14, 2013
5:30 a.m.: Police believe Myers spent the night inside the abandoned hotel above the former Glory Days bar on North Main St. in Herkimer and are in no rush to end the standoff. Police are operating under the assumption that Myers is still alive inside, despite repeated failed attempts to contact him via cell phone and bullhorn. They say they will update the media sometime Thursday morning.
6:12 a.m.: Police sent a robot inside the abandoned building during the early morning hours, but did not say what exactly was found.
8 a.m.: Published reports have added to the overnight events. Police entered the former Glory Days bar in search of Myers and used robots and tear gas in the attempt during the early morning hours. They will update the media in full soon, although an exact time for that update has not been released.
8:22 a.m.: State Troopers and FBI entered the building where Myers was held up. Myers was waiting in the basement, shot the FBI dog and officers shot and killed Myers.