Motive not known for Monroe municipal shooting
A township employee was shot and killed inside a Pennsylvania municipal building Tuesday, and a suspect was quickly taken into custody, officials said.
The gunman walked inside the Paradise Township municipal building about 8:20 a.m. and opened fire, according to police and township officials. State and local police rushed to the municipal building in the Pocono Mountains, about 100 miles (161 kilometers) north of Philadelphia, arresting the suspect without incident.
The victim was identified as Michael Tripus, 65, of Stroudsburg. The township’s website listed him as the sewage enforcement and building code officer. Police said David Green, 72, of Swiftwater, was taken into custody.
State police haven’t said what motivated the shooting, and it wasn’t immediately clear how or whether Green and Tripus knew each other.
“That is something we’re still working on right now,” Trooper David Peters told reporters at the scene.
The victim was a longtime township employee, according to Gary Konrath, chairman of the township’s Board of Supervisors.
Konrath said he was not in the building at the time but spoke to the township’s executive secretary, who was.
“She’s extremely shaken up,” he said.
Konrath said she told him the gunman is “not someone they are aware of. No one appears to recognize the individual.”
The township is in a rural area and has a population of about 3,200. It employs three full-time workers and one part-time worker in the office, and six on the road crew. The township building has no security camera, but there is a panic button that links to 911, according to Konrath.
Paradise Township is about 20 miles (32 kilometers) north of Ross Township, where a gunman opened fire at a Board of Supervisors’ meeting in 2013, killing three.
“As we have learned in the wake of the Ross Township shooting five years ago, township elected officials and employees serve on the front line of public service and sometimes find themselves in harm’s way,” the Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors said in a statement. “In today’s world, townships must balance the demands of community safety and public access.”