Editor’s note: This article is by Lee J. Kahrs and John S. McCright of the Addison Independent, in which it was first published April 7, 2014.
LEICESTER — A Leicester man will be arraigned on attempted murder charges today after police allege that he went into his neighbor’s house and shot him in the head early Sunday morning and later shot two Vermont State Police trooper when they came to talk with him.Brandon police were called to the home of 47-year-old Timothy Foley, the alleged shooter, a few hours before the shooting after Foley reported hearing screaming in the woods. Police at that time were told that Foley allegedly suffers from mental illness and may not have been taking his medication.
Foley is facing two counts of attempted murder with regard to the shooting of his neighbor (whose wife was with him at the time of the shooting) and for two counts of attempted aggravated murder with regard to shooting the troopers. Foley was lodged at the Marble Valley Regional Correctional Facility in Rutland for a lack of $100,000 bail.
He will be arraigned in Rutland District Court today at 1 p.m.
Police on Monday identified the victim as Mahlon McCoy, 64. The troopers who were shot were Sgt. Eugene Duplissis, 36, and Tpr. Matt Daley, 34. Both men work out of the New Haven barracks, and were placed on administrative leave, per department protocol.
State police and Brandon police responded to a 911 call at approximately 2:58 a.m. on Sunday from a woman who reported that an unknown person had come into her residence while she and her husband were in bed and shot her husband. She told police that the assailant shot the victim one time and then left the home.
The home is at 1496 Lake Dunmore Drive in Leicester, which is on the east side of Fern Lake.
The Brandon Rescue Squad transported the injured man to Porter Hospital in Middlebury, where he was treated for a gunshot wound to the head. He was then transported to Fletcher Allen Health Care; he was reported to be in stable condition on Sunday afternoon.
Troopers gathered information that led them to Foley’s home directly across the street at 1509 Lake Dunmore Road. After Foley refused to come outside, a trooper who was able to speak with him by phone from a neighbor’s residence tried to get him to come out of the house; at the same time other state police officers set up a perimeter outside the house.
At some point, state police commander Col. Tom L’Esperance reported, shots were fired from inside Foley’s home at troopers who had taken cover behind a tree in the front yard. One of the troopers was struck in the head with shotgun pellets. Another officer returned fire at the house while attempting to allow the injured trooper to get to safety. Foley allegedly then shot at the second trooper; that officer was also struck in the head with shotgun pellets.
Both troopers were able to move to a safe area, and they were transported by troopers to Porter Hospital for treatment of non-life threatening injuries. By 1:30 p.m. Sunday, one trooper had been treated and released; the other had been taken to Fletcher Allen for additional medical treatment. At a Sunday afternoon press conference, L’Esperance said that the trooper who was taken to Fletcher Allen was in “good shape, he just has to have some pellets removed from his head,” according to media reports.
Following the shooting, a Vermont State Police Hostage Negotiation Team member was able to re-establish telephone contact with Foley, who agreed to exit his residence and was taken into custody without incident around 6 a.m. Troopers took Foley to the New Haven state police barracks, where they booked him.
Additional state police came to Leicester to help in the investigation, including detectives from the Bureau of Criminal Investigation and members of the Crime Scene Search Team. Police also obtained a search warrant for Foley’s residence.
Police report that Addison County State’s Attorney David Fenster also came to the crime scene and is working closely with detectives.
L’Esperance on Sunday afternoon said there was no clear motive for the shooting, though it did not appear to be drug-related, according to media reports.
According to Brandon Police Chief Christopher Brickell, two Brandon police officers responded to a 911 call at Foley’s residence just hours before the shooting.
Brickell said officials at the New Haven State Police Barracks asked Brandon to handle the call at 10:40 p.m. Saturday night because they were busy with other calls.
Brandon officers responded to 1509 Lake Dunmore Road and spoke with Foley, who reported “hearing a child screaming in the woods across the road” from his house, Brickell said. The officers said that Foley appeared “out of it, possibly intoxicated.”
The officers searched the area around Foley’s house, the chief said, then went across the street and spoke to the neighbors. One neighbor just up the road asked if Foley was the complainant. When the officers responded that he was, Brickell said the neighbors told the officers that Foley’s mother had told them he was schizophrenic and was not taking his medication.
The officers left without finding anything to substantiate Foley’s claim, Brickell said, only to return to the house roughly four hours later after the alleged shooting.