Ex-State Trooper Kills 2 During Robbery at Turnpike Toll Booth in Pennsylvania

Police investigate at exit 180 off of the Pennsylvania Turnpike. (PHOTO CREDIT: Daniel Zampogna/PennLive.com/AP)
Police investigate at exit 180 off of the Pennsylvania Turnpike. (PHOTO CREDIT: Daniel Zampogna/PennLive.com/AP)

A retired state trooper killed two men Sunday morning when he tried to rob a fare collection vehicle at a turnpike toll booth in rural Pennsylvania, PEOPLE confirms.

The retired trooper was subsequently fatally shot by an active trooper, according to police.

The shooter was identified as Clarence D. Briggs, 55, of Newville, the Pennsylvania State Police said in a statement obtained by PEOPLE.

The victims were Daniel Crouse, 55, a turnpike employee, and Ronald Heist, 71, a security guard for the fare collection vehicle.

Police described the events, which began just before 7 a.m. Sunday at the turnpike interchange on I-76 in Fort Littleton – two hours east of Pittsburgh and an hour west of Harrisburg – as an elaborate armed robbery gone wrong.

The shooter arrived at the interchange and initially forced Crouse and another turnpike employee into a turnpike office building at gunpoint, police said. As he was trying to tie them up, a struggle ensued and the shooter ran outside.

At the same time, a fare collection vehicle arrived. The shooter then gunned down Heist, who was a passenger in the vehicle, and Crouse, who had followed the shooter outside, police said. The vehicle’s driver managed to flee on foot and was not harmed, but the driver left the vehicle behind.

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SOURCE: PEOPLE, Tim Nudd