On Monday, Feb. 11 at the Wilmington courthouse in Wilmington, Delaware, the suspect in the shooting has been identified. According to ABV6, when shots were fired at the courthouse, three people were left dead, including the shooter and two police officers were injured.
An SUV allegedly owned by the shooter was towed from the courthouse garage. The shooters body was removed from the lobby at approximately the same time.
Investigators have refused to release the shooter’s identity, however, according to family members it is Thomas Matusiecwicz. One of the victims, Christine Belford, 39, is the ex-wife of David Matusiewicz who is the son of Thomas Matusiecwicz.
The local police stated that Christine Belford was the intended target and she leaves behind four children. Delaware State Police Sgt. Paul Shavack stated, “This was not a random shooting.”
In addition to Belford, her friend, Laura Elizabeth Mulford was also shot and killed. Mulford was a wife and mother of two children who was at the courthouse to support Belford in an ongoing custody battle.
The custody battle has been raging for years and took a nasty turn when David Matusiewicz kidnapped their three children and took them out of the country to South America for 19 months. David was convicted of the kidnapping in 2009 and was sentenced to four years in prison.
Thomas and David Matusiewicz have been living in Texas and were only in Delaware in order to attend a court hearing. Late Monday night, David Matusiewicz was being questioned by the police in an effort to determine whether or not, he and or other family members were involved in the shooting.
The shooting occurred at 8:00 a.m Monday morning, when Thomas Matusiewicz walked into the lobby of the New Castle County Court of Common Pleas. Wilmington police stated that Matusiewicz, the gunman opened fire killing the two women.
During the shooting, two Capitol police officers were injured. One witness, Jose Beltran described what happened.
Beltran stated, “I was walking in, and as soon as I walked in I just heard the shots. I heard two shots, and I just saw people just ducking down and going on the ground, on the floor. So I just turned around and ran out of the building.”
Investigators stated the two injured police officers exchanged fire with Matusiewicz and were stuck by bullets in their bullet proof vests. They are reportedly in good condition.
The police department is still trying to determine whether or not Thomas Matusiewicz was killed by one of the officers or by a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Matusiewicz never made it past the metal detectors and into the secured part of the building.
Chick Chinski, a juror inside the building when the shots were fired stated, “I saw the guy come through the door and point-blank shoot two women. In fact, I didn’t realize it was gunfire at first.”
“Then when I saw a cop hit the floor, I hit the floor, and everyone else was going down at that point. There were maybe 50, 60 people in the lobby.”
Wanda Dean works at the courthouse and said, “We heard the gunfire. Some security staff came in and told us to stay in the office, stay down, there was a shooter outside. And one of our security staff was brought in. He had evidently been hit by debris from the broken glass.”
Christine Belford’s friends and family were shocked that she was killed in the courthouse shooting. Janet Jilek, a former co-worker of Belford’s said, “She would go to the ends of the earth for her kids. Her kids were her life. There was nobody who was more important to her than her kids.”
One of Belford’s neighbors who wanted to keep her name out of the press revealed that, “She [Belford] was terrified of him. When she moved into that house she had all the windows wired, she had cameras outside.”
“She said, ‘But he does owe us money, and he doesn’t want to pay it so he’s coming to fight it’. The courts didn’t protect her like they needed to. She asked for help, and they let her down.”
Delaware State Police Sgt. Paul Shavack said of the shooting of the two officers, “I can tell you that they are non-life threatening injuries. I can tell you on behalf of the Chief of the Capitol Police that they are doing well. They were shot in their vests, and their protective vests took the bullets.”
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