3 hurt in court shooting leave hospital; gunman identified

Law enforcement and emergency personnel gather outside the office of District Judge Daniel Shimshock's office in Masontown, Pa., Wednesday Sept. 19, 2018. At least four people were shot at the office. Details were not immediately available on the conditions of the victims. (AP Photo/Mike Jones/Washington Observer Reporter via AP)

MASONTOWN, Pa. (AP) — The wife of a gunman killed after he opened fire at a Pennsylvania municipal building Wednesday said in a social media post that she was OK but did not say whether she had been injured in the shooting.

Crystal Dowdell, 39, posted on her Facebook account that she was fine late Wednesday and that police had taken her phone as evidence. Pennsylvania state police confirmed Thursday that Patrick Dowdell, 61, was the deceased gunman.

Dowdell entered the Masontown Borough building about 60 miles south of Pittsburgh after 2 p.m. Wednesday with a handgun drawn and began firing into the crowded complex’s lobby. He wounded a police officer, who was treated and released for injuries to his hand, before wounding three civilians.

Authorities would not say whether any of the victims were Dowdell’s intended target or related to the domestic violence charges he was scheduled to appear in court to face Wednesday.

The three were taken to Ruby Memorial Hospital in Morgantown, West Virginia. A spokeswoman said Thursday the two men, ages 35 and 47, and a 39-year-old woman were all released Wednesday night.

Dowdell was shot and killed by a German Township police officer, who has not been identified.

Dowdell had been arrested Aug. 25 and charged with aggravated assault, terroristic threats, strangulation, simple assault and harassment.

The Observer-Reporter obtained court records related to a protective order granted against Dowdell and obtained by his wife Crystal.

Crystal Dowdell said in her August 27 request for a protective order that her husband had grabbed her and threatened her with a gun three days earlier after she asked for a divorce. She reported to police that he also choked her with a belt two days earlier, after accusing her of blocking his phone number and ignoring his calls.

“He said if this is the way I want it this is the way it will be. He said there would be no divorce and he would take out whoever he needed to take out,” she wrote in the petition.

The final protection order granted on September 10, ordered authorities to get his belongings, and car from the shared home and to confiscate any of Patrick Dowdell’s firearms or weapons.

It was unclear Thursday if the order had been executed.

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