Springettsbury Police: Bullets flew past young party-goers

Liz Evans Scolforo
York Dispatch

Teens and young adults at a house party in Springettsbury Township over the weekend could easily have been struck and killed by bullets from a high-powered rifle, according to police.

"Someone was watching over those kids," Springettsbury Township Police Sgt. Stefan Kochansky said.

LOGO police fire

The young people were attending a party inside a home in the 200 block of Lynbrook Drive North early on the morning of Saturday, June 23, when a disagreement occurred, according to Springettsbury Township Detective Christopher Ford, who is the lead investigator in the case.

That disagreement "resulted in multiple shots subsequently being fired into this house" from outside, Ford said.

Evidence recovered at the scene indicates the bullets were fired from a high-powered rifle, according to Kochansky.

Bullets fired into one side of the house came out the other side, meaning they went completely through the house and somehow missed the young people inside, he said.

"We're extremely thankful no one was hurt," the sergeant said, adding people were "very close to being killed."

Ford said investigators are still trying to track down and interview party guests because getting the shooter or shooters off the streets is the top priority.

"There's someone out there who didn't have any regard for ... life," Ford said, adding police want "to put these people in jail."

Two hours later: Complicating the investigation is the fact that no one called police until more than two hours after the gunfire — neither party-goers nor neighbors, according to police.

Kochansky called it mind-boggling that gunfire in one of the township's quietest neighborhoods didn't prompt any residents to call 911.

Investigators who canvassed the neighborhood learned that several residents heard the gunfire at the time and knew what they were hearing, but they "elected not to call" 911, according to Ford.

By the time officers were called to the scene at 4:24 a.m., any chance of a quick arrest had evaporated, he said.

Ford and Kochansky noted that had 911 been called immediately, Springetts officers could have been on scene in two or three minutes, and perhaps even been able to capture the shooter.

'Troublesome': Certainly officers would have been able to identify and speak with more party-goers if 911 had been called right away, the detective said, and confirmed it's frustrating.

"That's really troublesome to us," Ford said. "We're only as good as the information we get. ... We need the public's help to solve this stuff."

Kochansky said he can't recall another incident of gunfire in that neighborhood going back 15 years or so.

Anyone with information is urged to call Springettsbury Township Police at 717-840-2971 or York County Crime Stoppers at 717-755-TIPS. Or reach out to police through social media.

Callers can remain anonymous, police said.

— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at levans@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.