Pocono Mountain Regional Police: Shooting started because of ‘mistaken identity’

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COOLBAUGH TOWNSHIP, MONROE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) – In a press conference held Tuesday morning by Pocono Mountain Regional Police, Chief Christopher Wagner recounted the events of Monday night’s shooting and that the entire incident started out as a case of “mistaken identity.”

Chief Wagner stated that the shooting began when the suspects, driving a Volvo, saw a black Mercedes exiting A Pocono Country Place and thought it was being driven by an individual they had past conflicts with.

Wagner says the Volvo cut the Mercedes off and began firing shots into it. The Mercedes fled while the Volvo chased while continuing to fire.

The Mercedes pulled into the Tobyhanna Shopping Center, the drivers of that car, who were armed, began firing shots back at the Volvo, striking one of the passengers, Courtney Newman.

Wagner says Newman was then placed in another car while the Mercedes drove off.

The shooters in the Volvo proceeded to an address at Ledgewood Drive, Tobyhanna where they believed the individual they were chasing had fled. They fired numerous shots into the residence, striking two civilians.

The Volvo then headed to another location on Hampshire Drive in Tobyhanna, where they believed their target to be and shot another male whom police believe had no connection to the others.

Police were then able to track down the suspects and brought them all into police custody.

The chief said that they believe they have everyone in custody who was involved with the shooting and there is no further threat to the public.

The suspects, all from Tobyhanna, include :

An unnamed 16-year-old juvenile, who will be charged as an adult, Laron Watson, 22, Solidin Hamilton, 22, Aja Nay Watson, 19, and Jahlayah Blondell, 20.

Charges include attempted criminal homicide, aggravated assault, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, discharge of a firearm into an occupied structure, possessing an instrument of crime, and other related charges.

Police say multiple search warrants are in effect and multiple weapons have been obtained.

In total there were four people injured in the shooting, only one of whom were involved in the incident.

There has been no word on the current condition of the victims.

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