ShareThis Page
News

Gunman in Fayette County mass shooting dies, police say

| Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2018, 3:32 p.m.
Tim Smith
Facebook
Tim Smith
Tim Smith
Facebook
Tim Smith
Chelsie Cline
Facebook
Chelsie Cline
Seth Cline
Facebook
Seth Cline
Courtney  Snyder
Facebook
Courtney Snyder
William “Billy” Porterfield, 27, of Melcroft was one of four people fatally shot by Timothy O. Smith, 28, of Stahlstown just before 3 a.m. Sunday at Ed’s Car Wash in Fayette County.
WPXI
William “Billy” Porterfield, 27, of Melcroft was one of four people fatally shot by Timothy O. Smith, 28, of Stahlstown just before 3 a.m. Sunday at Ed’s Car Wash in Fayette County.

A Stahlstown man believed to have shot and killed four people early Sunday at a Fayette County car wash is dead, state police said.

Timothy O. Smith, 28, died at Forbes Hospital in Monroeville, Trooper Robert Broadwater of the Uniontown barracks confirmed Tuesday.

Two doctors pronounced Smith dead at 8:54 p.m. Sunday, according to a state police incident report.

The Allegheny County Medical Examiner's office confirmed the time of death late Tuesday night, reporting Smith died Sunday night at the hospital of a self-inflicted injury.

For two days, authorities repeatedly said Smith was on life support with a gunshot wound to his head, possibly self-inflicted, and was not expected to survive.

“All I am going to say is that he was declared clinically dead Sunday night,” Fayette County District Attorney Richard Bower said Tuesday.

Smith's family could not be reached for comment.

The owner of Tall Cedars, a restaurant and tavern in Donegal where Smith and the others had been earlier that fatal night, on Tuesday disagreed with a characterization by a victim's father that there had been any confrontation or run-in at his business.

Jay Springer declined to give any details of what happened. He said he turned over video surveillance to police.

Asked whether staff told Smith to leave that night, Springer said he was already on his way out.

Victims' arrangements

Funeral arrangements have been announced for three of the four people who were fatally shot in the village of Melcroft early Sunday.

Visitation for Chelsie Lou Cline, 25, of White; her brother, Seth Cline, 21, of White; and Cortney Sue Snyder, 23, of Connellsville, will be held Thursday at the Vito C. Martucci Funeral Home in Connellsville.

Police said both Clines, Snyder and William “Billy” Porterfield, 27, of Melcroft were fatally shot by Smith just before 3 a.m. after the group had gathered at Ed's Car Wash on Indian Creek Valley Road. A sixth person took cover in the back of a vehicle and sustained minor injuries.

Smith was wearing body armor and toting an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle and a 9 mm handgun — along with several magazines for each — when he ambushed the group, District Attorney Rich Bower said.

Autopsies performed Monday by Dr. Cyril Wecht showed that all four victims suffered multiple gunshot wounds, according to a Fayette County coroner spokeswoman. The manner of death was not released.

Police are investigating a reported incident at the Donegal bar the night of the shooting as well as cellphone communication between the group to determine what brought them to the car wash. Family and friends of Chelsie Cline's have said she and Smith had hung out in the past, and they believed Smith was unhappy over an apparent failed relationship.

Information from the victims' obituaries:

• Chelsie Cline graduated from Connellsville Area High School in 2011 and worked several jobs afterward, most recently at Sarnelli's Italian Market. She was the daughter of Edward Cline Jr. and his wife, Amy, and Jody Kolarik and her husband, Daniel.

Friends described her as a kind, genuine person who spoke her mind and always had her social media accounts at her fingertips. She enjoyed spending time with her 12-year-old stepson. She is survived by her parents, two sisters, a grandmother and other relatives.

Her visitation will be held from 2 to 8 p.m. Thursday, and a service will be held at noon Friday in the funeral home.

• Seth Cline had a passion for buying old trucks, hunting, fishing and riding his quad. He was a dependable friend and loved playing video games and hanging out with his three nephews.

He is the son of Edward Cline Jr. and his wife, Amy. In addition to his parents and nephews, he is survived by two sisters.

His visitation will be held from 1 to 8 p.m. Thursday. A service will be held at noon Friday in the funeral home. He will be buried at Hill View Cemetery.

• Snyder was a caretaker at Living Treasures Animal Park and she enjoyed the outdoors, from hunting and fishing to four-wheeling, family and friends said.

Her obituary described her as a sarcastic, witty person who was strong-willed. She had a 4-year-old son, Chase, and is the daughter of Rick and Cindy Snyder of Connellsville.

Snyder is survived by her parents, son, a sister, grandparents and other relatives.

Visitation will be held from 1 to 6 p.m. Thursday. A service at the funeral home Friday will begin at 9:30 a.m. followed by interment in Mount Tabor Cemetery.

Paul Peirce, Renatta Signorini and Jeff Himler are Tribune-Review staff writers. Reach Peirce at 724-850-2860, ppeirce@tribweb.com or via Twitter @ppeirce_trib. Reach Signorini at 724-837-5374, rsignorini@tribweb.com or via Twitter @byrenatta. Reach Himler at 724-836-6622, jhimler@tribweb.com or via Twitter @jhimler_news.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me