New Castle County Courthouse Shooting Investigation

February 12, 2013 at 12:24pm

DSP News Release: New Castle County Courthouse Shooting Investigation

 

Location:

  • New Castle County Courthouse, 500 North King Street, Wilmington, DE

 

Date of Occurrence:  

  • Monday, February 11, 2013 at 8:15 a.m.

 

Victims:

  • Christine Belford-39 of Newark, DE (deceased)
  • Laura Mulford-47 of Newark, DE (deceased)

 

Suspect:

  • Thomas S. Matusiewicz-68 of Edcouch, Texas (deceased)

 

Delaware Capitol Police Officers

  • Michael E. Manley-42, 7 year veteran of the Delaware Capitol Police (treated and released)
  • Steven D. Rinehart-50, Capitol Police Officer since July 2012, also a 25 year retired New Castle County Police Officer (treated and released)

 

Resume:

Wilmington-The Delaware State Police Homicide Unit continues to investigate the fatal shooting that occurred yesterday morning at the New Castle County Courthouse.

 

Preliminary investigation has determined that on Monday, February 11, 2013 at approximately 7:40 a.m. the suspect Thomas S. Matusiewicz-68 of Edcouch, Texas, along with his son identified as David Matusiewicz-45 also of Edcouch, Texas, entered the public lobby area of the New Castle County Courthouse located at 500 North King Street, Wilmington, DE. David Matusiewicz was scheduled to appear for a child support matter involving his former wife, Christine Belford-39 of Newark, DE. David Matusiewicz proceeded through the secure checkpoint monitored by Delaware Capitol Police, and made his way into the court facility.

 

Thomas S. Matusiewicz remained in the public lobby area. At approximately 8:15 a.m. Christine Belford, accompanied by Laura Mulford-47 of Newark, DE entered the public lobby area of the courthouse to also appear for the scheduled court hearing. Thomas S. Matusiewicz approached the two female victims that were standing within the public lobby area, produced a .45 caliber semiautomatic handgun and fired multiple rounds at close range, striking Belford in the upper body. Mulford attempted to flee and Matusiewicz fired multiple rounds at close range striking Mulford in the upper body.  He then engaged in a gun battle, firing multiple rounds in the direction of Delaware Capitol Police Officers that were in the lobby as he was attempting to walk out, striking two of those officers in the upper body, protected by their ballistic vests. Total number of rounds fired has not been determined at this time due to continued evidence and forensic processing being conducted at the crime scene.

 

During the exchange, Matusiewicz suffered two gunshot wounds, one in the upper body and a second, a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. He was pronounced dead at the scene. His body was removed and turned over to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner where an autopsy was performed and the cause and manner of death was determined as Suicide-gunshot wound to head.

 

Belford and Mulford were transported from the scene to the Christiana Hospital Trauma Center where they were pronounced dead. Both were turned over to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner where an autopsy was performed and the cause and manner of death was determined as Homicide-gunshot wounds to chest.

 

Delaware Capitol Police Officer Michael Manley-42 and Officer Steven D. Rineheart-50 were both shot in the upper body striking their ballistic vests.

Both were transported to the Christiana Hospital Trauma Center and where they were treated and released with minor injuries.

 

David Matusiewicz was located at the courthouse and interviewed by detectives. During the course of the interview it was determined that he was in violation of a federal probation violation and was held for hearing. (Questions pertaining to this status can be directed to Kimberly Reeves the US Attorney’s Office 302-893-4935).

 

 

Delaware State Police Homicide Detectives continue their investigation by conducting interviews, reviewing video surveillance, and collecting evidence at the crime scene. Thank you for your continued patience and cooperation as this investigation progresses. Detectives continue to request that anyone that was at the incident and left prior to being interviewed to contact Delaware State Police Troop 2 at 302-834-260 Extension #0.