Foul play not suspected in fatal weekend shooting
MOUNT JACKSON — A 46-year-old woman died Sunday afternoon as a result of a stray bullet striking her in the house that she was occupying, Shenandoah County authorities said Monday.
Maj. Scott Proctor, of the Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office, identified the victim as Gina Angela Shoemaker of Edinburg. Proctor said deputies were called to a residence in the 200 block of Charlotte Lane around 3 p.m. Sunday. He said the caller reported a female had been shot in the head and had died as a result of her wound.
Proctor said the investigation is continuing, but there is no indication of foul play. Proctor said the shot, one of several reported in the area around the same time, was fired from an area adjacent to the property where the victim died.
He said the shot was fired by one of two individuals, one man and one girl, who had been target shooting.
“It appears the victim was struck by a round or bullet that came from that area,” Proctor said.
The target shooters were visiting neighbors of the residence where Shoemaker died, Proctor said.
Proctor said an undetermined number of shots were fired. He said Shoemaker was in the kitchen at the time she was hit.
Proctor said deputies seized three firearms — one handgun and two rifles — that were part of the target shooting that authorities said led to the death of Shoemaker.
Proctor said several others were in the house with Shoemaker when she was shot. He said it appeared that one of them, most likely a family member, called in the shooting to authorities “almost immediately” after it happened.
Proctor said the two people involved in the shooting had been cooperating with the investigation. He refused to provide their names while the investigation is continuing.
“It would be inappropriate to be talking of charges at this point,” Proctor said.
A crime scene investigation team made up of law enforcement officers from the Sheriff’s Office, Strasburg, Mount Jackson and Woodstock remained on the scene until early Monday afternoon collecting forensic evidence that will undergo a laboratory analysis. Commonwealth’s Attorney Amanda Wiseley was also at the scene on Sunday, Proctor said.
Proctor said a “considerable” amount of time spanning several years has passed since the Sheriff’s Office investigated an accidental shooting fatality.
“Safety is paramount any time it comes to shooting or handling a firearm,” Proctor said.
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