The suspect was arrested six hours later
A Pennsylvania man allegedly killed a police officer who responded to a 911 domestic violence call being made against him, authorities tell PEOPLE.
Ray Shetler, 31, is charged with criminal homicide for allegedly shooting St. Clair Township Officer Lloyd Reed, 54, who responded to the domestic violence complaint Saturday evening, Westmoreland County District Attorney John Peck tells PEOPLE.
Reed, a St. Clair Township police officer and a law enforcement veteran of more than 20 years, was shot once in the upper chest area, Peck says. He was transported to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Trooper Stephen Limani, a state police spokesman, says a woman claiming to be Shetler’s girlfriend called 911 to report that Shetler had allegedly bloodied her nose and that he was carrying a long gun, threatening to kill both the woman and himself.
Reed arrived at the residence alone, whereupon Shetler allegedly walked toward him carrying the gun, Limani says. Shetler allegedly refused Reed’s command to drop his weapon, after which a shootout ensued, Limani says. Shetler was shot once in his shoulder and Reed was shot dead, according to Limani.
Limani says it was unclear who fired the first shot or whether Shetler had been pointing his gun at Reed.
He adds that Shetler is known to law enforcement and “has a history of violence.”
“The police officer has that in his mind, plus the fact that he has a guy walking towards him with a long gun,” says Limani.
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Shelter’s alleged girlfriend stayed on the phone with cops “the entire time to when she’s standing over the officer and he’s dying,” says Limani.
“It’s tough as a police officer to listen to, but it’s good evidence,” he adds.
Shetler fled the scene but was tracked down two miles away six hours later, when a civilian who was aware of the manhunt called 911, according to Limani.
Peck says Shetler is being held without bail and will have to enter a plea at a preliminary hearing scheduled for December.
He says the 911 call came into the state police, but since state troopers were so far away, Reed responded because he was closer.
“It’s a brotherhood,” Limani says. “We would take their calls without batting an eyelash and they’d do the same.”
Limani says that Reed had just celebrated his 15-year anniversary with his wife. “He’s been described as living a simple life and being dedicated to law enforcement,” he says.