Hollidaysburg, PA – A woman decorating her church for a child’s Christmas party was slain by a man unknown to her at Juanita Valley Gospel Church. This incident sparked a mass shooting involving a total three murders and the wounding of three PA State Police officers.
The incident, which occurred December 21, 2012 happened as the victim was decorating the church. She had reportedly been at the church the whole day before cooking food for a gathering after the church’s longtime pastor had died.
While decorating, bullets were suddenly shot through a window, and then the murderer entered and shot one of two women before he left the scene.
He then drove to another location where he murdered two men, who are believed to have been familiar to him.
When police responded and located him, one trooper was shot twice, a second trooper was shot at and struck by glass and shrapnel in the eye and forehead. A third trooper was injured when he was involved in a head on crash with the suspect. The suspect was killed in the gunfight.
The church is in a rural community and has a membership of about 150 people. The incident occurred outside of regular church hours, so it is believed only a few people were inside the church.
The police processed a total of five crime scenes as a result of these multiple attacks. At the time of reporting, it was unknown if the suspect had a relationship with any of the victims inside the church.