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Neighbors comment on shooting at Valley Meadow Townhomes in Halfway

July 22, 2013|By DAN DEARTH | dan.dearth@herald-mail.com
  • A shooting took place behind 17402 Fair Oaks Court in Halfway on Sunday.
By Ric Dugan / Staff Photographer

Children were playing and a lawn crew was cutting grass at the Valley Meadow Townhomes in Halfway on Monday, a day after a man was shot behind one of the housing units.

As they drank coffee on their porches Monday morning, some residents said they weren’t surprised a shooting had occurred at the complex.

“It’s just getting worse here,” said a woman who didn’t want to give her name, because the shooter was still on the loose.

“I’ve been trying to get out of here,” another woman said of her efforts to move.

Of the 10 people who were asked to comment, all of them wanted to remain anonymous, because they feared for their safety.

They said drugs and robberies are a big problem in the housing complex, and fistfights are common in the parking lot.

The housing complex was the site of a fatal stabbing on Dec. 19, 2007, when Alison Munson of 17424 Mapleleaf Court was killed by her ex-boyfriend, Douglas Pryor.

Pryor, who shot and killed Smithsburg Police Officer Christopher Nicholson the same night that he killed Munson, is serving multiple life sentences in state prison.

Washington County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Carly Hose said Monday that the shooting on Sunday was reported at 6:15 p.m., when two men got into an argument inside a housing unit at 17402 Fair Oaks Court. She said the argument carried outside to the rear of the unit, where numerous shots were fired, and a 27-year-old man was wounded.

“We’re very lucky that no one else was hit,” she said.

Hose said the victim, whose name was not released, was in stable condition at an undisclosed hospital.

She said the shooter remained at large. He was described as a 6-foot tall black man with a thin build, wearing a dark T-shirt and shorts.

The sheriff’s office said Sunday that the victim was driven in a Buick LeSabre with Pennsylvania tags from the site of the shooting to the Volunteer Fire Co. of Halfway, which is a few blocks away on Lincoln Avenue.

One of the men in the Buick got out and said his friend had been shot, then abandoned the vehicle at the firehouse.

Hose said deputies hadn’t located the driver of the Buick as of Monday.

A person at the firehouse drove the victim to Meritus Medical Center near Hagerstown. Police said he was later transferred to another hospital.

Officers cordoned off the Buick with yellow police tape before it was towed away Sunday evening.

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