Fight over snow shovelling leaves 3 neighbours dead in Pennsylvania
By Josh K. Elliott Global News
Posted February 4, 2021 2:26 pm
Updated February 5, 2021 10:17 am
A long-simmering neighbourhood feud boiled over into a fatal argument about snow shovelling on Monday, after a winter storm dropped 60 centimetres on a small Pennsylvania town.
Authorities say Jeffrey Spaide, 47, shot and killed his neighbours, James and Lisa Goy, before killing himself, in an incident partially captured on surveillance cameras in Plains Township, Pa.
The disastrous argument happened shortly before 9 a.m. on Monday, prosecutors say. James, 50, and Lisa Goy, 48, were clearing snow out of their parking spots and dumping it on Spaide’s property across the street, according to surveillance footage obtained by investigators.
Police say Spaide confronted the couple about their snow shovelling and they soon started trading obscene gestures and insults. James Goy appeared to raise his fist in a threatening gesture, then Spaide retreated into his home. He came back out with a pistol and shot the married couple in the middle of the street, prosecutors said. Then he went back inside.
Investigators say Spaide came back out a short time later with an AR-15-style rifle.
“He retrieved the rifle and shot them again,” Plains Township Sgt. Michael Smith said, according to the local Citizens Voice paper.
Officers were called to the scene for a report of gunshots and found the Goys already dead, prosecutors said. Police went to Spaide’s door and heard a shot from inside.
“Spaide shot himself,” Smith said. “We heard the shot. At that point, we made a tactical entry and he was found with a self-inflicted gunshot.”
Officials say a total of 15 to 20 shots were fired.
Neighbours told police that Spaide and the Goys had been arguing for a long time over various issues, including snow removal. Police did not have any record of such disputes.
“They’re across the street from each other, and when they would remove snow they would throw it across the street at the other person’s property,” Luzerne County First Assistant District Attorney Sam Sanguedolce said.
Authorities say the Goys had a 15-year-old son who is now in his grandparents’ care.
Unbelievable! That’s pretty nervy to dump your snow on a neighbors property without permission.
Pretty lousy marksmanship too. The gallows humor side of me has to ask what he was using for ammo. Why the shouter didn’t realize he was being shot at boggles my mind. Maybe he thought “the pussy” would never take him on? Just unbelievable!
But i will say the two egged that on, and when he came at them with a gun they just stood there talkin trash. the stupid woman was cussin him as he was shooting. not the sharpest tack in the box…either of them. Glad i don’t have that close of neighbors and they are a ton smarter than all three of those morons.
there are lot of take aways
why did he go get his rifle ?
was it because he only had the rounds in his pistol?
now you as a nieghbour what would have been your initial response?
and because of that response how would you not have been the third victim?
you just witnessed this and it is apparent that she is still alive and the threat has left.
my initial response would have been to rush to her aid (medical) and the triage would have created a wee bit of tunnel vision
would I realise that the shooter had returned in time to not be the next victim?
something like this and bad as it sounds would be to retreat unless I had secondary security and covering fire before affecting aid.
Would I be willing to lose my wife or child to what could be an unsaveable GSV (using my immediate family as an example = as of now we are all licensed and experienced shooters (even the 18yo who is going for her “pistol” license on the 19th)). They would be my immediate security or I go alone.
I honestly can’t say, I would like to say I would have run out to have helped her and tried to take him out, but with age and disabilities slowing me down and a wife to think about I don’t know. You never really know until you are faced with it. I like to think instinct and training would have kicked in, I hope I never have to find out.
We bought a house in FL, two weeks in, not even unpacked, we decided to move, neighbors in that video reminded me of them, drunk, loud, obnoxious, called the county as our moving trailer offended them, both admitted and denied doing it, that was our last house there, the year before covid, so we feel grateful they were obnoxious as we’d be there now
I’ve quit very good paying jobs over obnoxious coworkers, life is to short and the world is too large to deal with BS day after day and not seek to make it better
It started before that. In 2016, there were people making it clear that they thought it was OK to blatantly break laws, just to mess with people that were trying to get to a political rally. Their side lost the election, so they moved on to dehumanizing anyone that disagreed with their politics.
The isolation and other actions of the last year, just aggravated what was already heating up.
Seems to have been a feud that had been gradually escalating over time, but there are probably a few things that contributed to how stupid the actions in the video were.
Two against one. Some people put more stock in having a numerical advantage intimidate the other side into backing down, than they should.
A woman was involved. Sounds sexist, but it’s intended as an observation that there are some women who seem to have been hard-wired to not only needlessly escalate situations by running their mouth, but also push their significant others into joining them in escalating the situation. My ex-wife is that type.
Projection. They expected the neighbor to be the same sort of a–holes that they were, making threats with likely no intention of doing much more than using those threats for intimidation.
Stupidity used to hurt. Decades ago, people tended to grow out of this sort of childish behavior, after getting beat up on the playground a few times. Now, schools and society (to some degree) have removed those simple lessons from childhood, leaving people to learn them as adults, when the consequences of running their mouth can be more severe.