Gunman In State College Kills 3 Men In Separate Shootings, Then Kills Himself

Jan 25, 2019

A gunman opened fire at a hotel bar near Penn State's main campus, killing two men and wounding a woman, broke into a stranger's house and fatally shot the 83-year-old homeowner, and then killed himself, authorities said.

The initial shooting happened just after 10 p.m. Thursday at P.J. Harrigan's Bar & Grill in State College, about 2 miles (3 kilometers) from Penn State's campus.

State College Police Chief John Gardner said Friday afternoon they are still trying to determine why Jordan Witmer, 21, of Bellefonte, opened fire inside the bar, shooting two men he apparently didn't know, and Nicole Abrino, with whom he had an unspecified connection.

Dean Beachy, 62, of Millersburg, Ohio, died at the scene, and Beachy's 19-year-old son Steven Beachy died at a hospital Friday afternoon. Abrino was shot in the chest and remains at a Pittsburgh hospital. Gardner said he didn't know her condition.

Witmer then fled the bar, crashed his vehicle and broke into a home by shooting out a sliding glass door, Gardner said. Inside, he fatally shot homeowner George McCormick, 83, before turning the gun on himself. McCormick's distraught 80-year-old wife barricaded herself in a room and called 911.

There was no relationship between Witmer and McCormick, and officials believe he chose the home at random, Gardner said.

There was never any threat to Penn State or its students, he said.

They are still gathering information about the shooter, whom he described as being in the military.

Family members told WNEP-TV that Dean Beachy was an auctioneer and that he and his son were in State College for a horse auction.