Kidnapper's father ID'd as Delaware shooter
WILMINGTON, Del. — A bitter custody battle that included an international kidnapping and prison sentences for a former optometrist and his mother ended in gunfire at a Delaware courthouse, with the doctor's father killing his former daughter-in-law and another woman before fatally shooting himself.
Delaware State Police said 68-year-old Thomas Matusiewicz walked into the lobby of the New Castle County Courthouse on Monday, pulled out a .45-caliber semiautomatic pistol and shot 39-year-old Christine Belford and her 47-year-old friend Laura Mulford. He then exchanged fire with police, hitting two officers who were protected by armored vests.
Authorities were working Tuesday to understand how the killings were planned, questioning former optometrist and convicted kidnapper David Matusiewicz about his father and searching the older man's home in Edcouch, Texas. The yard of the small single-story home was filled with a crime scene investigation truck and unmarked grey pickup trucks commonly driven by federal agents.
Belford and Mulford, both of Newark, were at the county courthouse on Monday to attend a child support arrears hearing for David Matusiewicz.
During the shootout, Thomas Matusiewicz suffered two gunshot wounds but died from a self-inflicted gunshot, said Delaware state police spokesman Sgt. Paul Shavack.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
- National Guard called in to keep the peace in Baltimore
- Obamacare contraception ruling thrown out
- Riot erupts in Baltimore after funeral for man hurt in police custody
- Storm knocks out power to New Orleans airport for hours
- Man formally charged with murder of Indiana student
- Honus Wagner baseball card sells for $1.32M
- Iowa avian flu outbreak might be spreading
- Top Tulsa sheriff’s aide quits under fire
- Colorado movie theater shooting trial begins
- Lynch takes office as U.S. Attorney General
- Government fluoride standard lowered