An Allegany County man shot Thursday night by state troopers as he opened fire on members of his family has died of his wounds, police said Friday.
Samuel E. George was pronounced dead at Maryland Shock Trauma Center, according to police. Internal and criminal investigations have been launched into the incident, which started with a bizarre standoff in a mobile home park and ended when the revolver-wielding man was shot twice in the torso.
Troopers took cover behind trees at a nearby residence as George, 53, of the 15000 block of Meadow Dale Drive in Rawlings, cocked the hammer of his revolver and began walking toward them, according to police. George told the troopers he would only put down the gun if police shot him, authorities said.
The troopers had responded to the scene shortly after 10:30 p.m. George's wife had called to say he was destroying their mobile home with gunfire, police said.
According to witnesses, the gunfire started at the nearby mobile home of George's father and brother, police said.
At that residence, police said, George confronted a family friend, 20-year-old Julius D. Shaffer, pointing his .22-caliber revolver at Shaffer and pulling the trigger. However, the weapon did not fire. George then pointed the gun at the head of his brother, Jason E. George, 33, and pulled the trigger again, but it again failed to fire, police said.
Samuel George then returned to his home, where he may have reloaded his gun, police said.
When he returned, his father, Edward George, 77, "was standing on the porch urging his son to put the gun down," police said in a news release. He then fired at his father but did not hit him, police said.
He again approached his brother and Shaffer, firing at them and grazing his brother's leg, police said.
Shaffer and Jason George took cover, while Samuel George continued to fire at them, police said.
When troopers arrived, Samuel George fired his gun into the air and began walking down the street toward the Rawlings Volunteer Fire Department, with troopers and deputies with the Allegany County sheriff's office following him and demanding he drop his weapon, according to police.
George did not do so and told police he wanted them to shoot him, police said.
As police took cover, George showed them he had cocked the hammer of his gun before walking toward them, police said.
Sgt. Jason Crowe, a 13-year state police veteran, and Trooper Eric Derham, a 22-year veteran, feared for their lives and opened fire on George with department-issued shotguns, police said.
"The suspect was incapacitated and troopers immediately approached and removed the revolver from his hand," according to a police statement.
Derham began providing emergency medical treatment to George. A state police medevac helicopter flew George to Western Maryland Regional Medical Center, police said.
Jason George refused medical treatment at the scene. No troopers or deputies were injured. Both Crowe and Derham have been placed under routine administrative leave during the investigation, which is continuing. An internal-affairs investigation is also under way.
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