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Posted: August 6, 2013 9:02 p.m.

Local pastor's dad shot at Penn. meeting

The father of Pastor Joe LaGuardia of Trinity Baptist Church in Conyers was one of the three victims killed when a disgruntled resident opened fire at a small town Pennsylvania board meeting Monday.

James Vinny LaGuardia, 64, of Saylorsburg was among the 15 people attending the board meeting of the Ross Township, a small town of population 6,000, north of Pittsburgh. LaGuardia operated a TV repair shop.

According to the Pocono Record, Rockne Newell, 59, a disabled junk dealer who had an 18-year feud with town officials over debris on his property and the use of his land, began shooting through the wall with a Ruger Mini-14 rifle.

Newell had been evicted this year after losing a court case stemming from complaints that he lived in a shed, used a bucket for a bathroom, built an illegal culvert, built an illegal structure and failed to clean up his property, according to the Associated Press. Newell had set up a fundraising page for court costs.

After shooting through the meeting room wall, Newell entered the room and shot township supervisor David Fleetwood and four residents.

Newell then went back out to his rental car, retrieved a .44 Magnum revolver and came back to the room. Two attendees, parks and recreation director Bernie Kozen resident Mark Kres, wrestled him to the ground, according to AP reports.

"I wish I killed more of them!" Newell reportedly shouted as he was taken into custody by state troopers.

Vinny LaGuardia and Gerard J. Kozic, 53, of Saylorsburg, died at the scene. Fleetwood, 62, died at the hospital. Kozic's wife was among the shot and injured.

 

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