Breaking News ... Brockway shooting: Trooper critical; standoff over; gunman dead - TheCourierExpress.com: Local News

Breaking News ... Brockway shooting: Trooper critical; standoff over; gunman dead

Print
Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Friday, September 27, 2013 1:27 pm | Updated: 5:28 pm, Sat Sep 28, 2013.

A state police trooper from DuBois remained in critical condition Friday after being shot near Brockway Thursday afternoon.

Police say the man who shot him took his own life during a long standoff with police that lasted into Friday morning.

Trooper First Class Bradley Wilson was shot twice - once in the neck and once in the upper torso - while he and other troopers and members of the Troop C Vice Unit and the Jefferson County Drug Task Force tried to serve a search warrant at the home of Kenneth Lees Sr. at 1881 Cemetery Hill Road in Snyder Township on the outskirts of Brockway.

Wilson is a 24-year veteran of the state police whose brother is the station commander at the Clarion barracks and whose nephew is attending the State Police Academy.

Lees fired from a window. Wilson was hit twice and immediately incapacitated according to Troop C Commander Capt. Bernard Petrovsky who, along with Public Information Officer Bruce Morris and Jefferson County District Attorney Jeff Burkett, held a press conference Friday morning.

Other members of the squad returned fire while Wilson was extricated from the line of fire.

Wilson was flown to Altoona Regional Hospital then to UPMC in Pittsburgh. He remains in critical condition.

Once the scene was secured, scores of state police and law enforcement agencies from throughout the Tri-County Area converged on the scene. Helicopters scoured the surrounding area and an armored Bearcat assault and siege vehicle was trucked to the scene from Pittsburgh.

Petrovsky said the warrant that officers were serving was part of an investigation in a possible methamphetamine lab at the Lees residence.

A perimeter was established around the residence. All efforts to make contact with anyone inside to negotiate a surrender failed.

Officials said the drug investigation is ongoing and declined to give any additional details.

Around 1 a.m. Friday, the state police Special Emergency Response Team entered the home and found Lees Sr. dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Petrovsky said Lees, 60, was the sole occupant in the home and was the shooter.

Police issued a be-on-the-lookout-for alert for Lees' son, Kenneth Jr., around 9:30 p.m. Thursday. A few moments later, officers spotted his car and attempted to initiate a traffic stop for traffic violations.

Lees Jr. led them on a 20- to 25-minute chase, Petrovsky said, that ended when the vehicle was disabled by car strips placed across the road in his path. Lees fled on foot but was apprehended and taken into custody. One trooper suffered minor injuries during the chase.

Burkett said Lees Jr. faces felony charges of fleeing and eluding and aggravated assault.

Residents in the area returned to their homes today but Cemetery Hill Road remained closed through late afternoon as officers processed the crime scene.

Look for additional information in this week's Tri-County Sunday.

Want to read more? Get a day pass to today's e-edition and 6 months of archives for only $1.75 here!

Rules of Conduct

  • 1 Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
  • 2 Don't Threaten or Abuse. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated. AND PLEASE TURN OFF CAPS LOCK.
  • 3 Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
  • 4 Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
  • 5 Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
  • 6 Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.

Welcome to the discussion.

Follow us on Facebook