CLARKSBURG, W.Va. — Harrison County Prosecuting Attorney Joe Shaffer says a “drug deal gone bad” ended with the deaths of four people Friday, including a father and son who were delivering newspapers at the time.
“(They were) Working very hard, getting up very early and happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time,” said Shaffer of the deaths of the two innocent bystanders on Friday’s MetroNews “Talkline.”
The shootings happened around 4:30 a.m. Friday on Locust Avenue in Clarksburg, behind the Kroger store.
Shaffer said the home was a “known drug location” in what had once been a nice neighborhood. He said it has declined during the past decade.
“Two individuals were initially shot and, I believe that, as the suspect was exiting the house, he encountered the two innocent people and went ahead and dispatched them as well,” he said.
The Clarksburg Exponent-Telegram identified those two victims as Fred and Freddy Swiger who had delivered newspapers on a contract basis for 30 years.
“They were extremely nice, loyal and cared very deeply about their customers. Further, their customers cared very deeply about them from the calls already this morning (Friday). They built a connection with people that was unique and special in every regard,” said Brian Jarvis, Exponent-Telegram President.
“We hope justice will be served as soon as possible for this heinous and senseless act.”
Clarksburg City Councilmember Patsy Trecost said his community is in mourning.
“Without a doubt, our thoughts and our prayers are with their families,” said Trecost. “It’s just an unhappy conversation we’re having and a lot of sorrow is going out throughout the whole community.”
Shaffer said there is one suspect for the shootings. As of Friday morning, no arrest had been made, but Shaffer said “there is no reason for the public to be alarmed.”
Clarksburg Police were conducting interviews with witnesses.