Ex-Cop Killed After Opening Firing on West Virginia Courthouse


A former Wheeling, W.Va., police officer was shot and killed Wednesday after using an assault rifle and a handgun to pepper Wheeling’s Federal Building with more than 20 rounds, reports the Wheeling News-Register. Police Chief Shawn Schwertfeger said Thomas Piccard, 55, who resigned from the police department in 2000, opened fire on the building at 2:43 p.m. His motive was not clear, but a number of rounds struck windows of U.S. Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld’s office on the second floor.

A Wheeling police officer and a federal building security guard shot and killed Piccard, Schwertfeger said. No one in the building was seriously hurt, though three security guards had minor injuries from breaking glass. Nearly half of Ihlenfeld’s staff has been furloughed due to the federal government shutdown and were not in the building. Schwertfeger said he had not yet reviewed Piccard’s personnel file and did not know the circumstances of his resignation.

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