Shooting suspect caught in Newfane

(Karl Heigl, shooting suspect)

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HARTLAND — A shooting suspect is in custody after a Tuesday morning manhunt that led police on a search through Hartland and Newfane.

The suspect, 38-year-old Karl Heigl, is accused of shooting John W. Walsh, 24, outside 3100 Bishop Road, where both men were living.

A 911 call reporting a domestic disturbance at the home came in to the sheriff’s department dispatch about 11 a.m.

“I think they were in a verbal fight,” Niagara County Sheriff’s Chief Deputy James Voutour said. “We don’t know what prompted the dispute. ... The call was very sketchy when it first came in. We’re not quite sure what happened.”

A woman and three children were also in the home, which Voutour described as “sort of like a flop house.”

“They all live there,” he said. “They’re kind of like transient types.”

Both men were reportedly intoxicated, and arguments had been going on in the house “all morning long,” Voutour said.

The fight escalated, and White and Heigl ended up outside, where Heigl allegedly shot White once in the ankle with a shotgun.

“He was trying to scare him,” Voutour said.

Heigl then fled the scene on foot, apparently leaving the gun inside the home.

Walsh was transported by Wright’s Corners Fire Company ambulance to the company’s fire hall on Route 78, where he was picked up by Mercy Flight and taken to Erie County Medical Center.

The extent of Walsh’s injuries was unknown. According to ECMC patient information, he was still in the emergency room Tuesday evening.

Officers from the Lockport Police Department and the New York State Police assisted sheriff’s deputies with the search for Heigl, which lasted an hour and a half. The search involved bloodhounds and K-9 units from all three agencies, as well as a sheriff’s department helicopter.

Inside the Bishop Road home, investigators looked at Heigl’s phone and called one of the last telephone numbers dialed, which turned out to belong to Heigl’s mother.

Heigl’s mother told deputies she had not heard from her son. A few minutes later, however, she called back and said Heigl had just arrived at her home on Transit Road in Newfane.

Investigators got on the phone with Heigl and spoke with him, as several units from the sheriff’s department and the state police sped from the Bishop Road scene to the Transit Road home.

Heigl was “fairly cooperative” on the phone, Voutour said.

When officers arrived, the suspect “surrendered peacefully with his hands up,” Voutour said.

As officers cleared the scene on Bishop Road, blood could be seen on the pavement near an overturned garbage can and an old ATV in the front yard.

Officers took a gun from inside the home into evidence.

State Police Zone Sgt. Ronald Warner said the state police were pleased with the resolution.

“It turned out very well,” he said. “(We had) good cooperation.”

Heigl was listed as one of the US&J’s “Lockport’s Most Wanted” on Dec. 23. He is wanted on a warrant from Lockport City Court for failure to appear Nov. 29 on a charge of driving while intoxicated.

Heigl was arrested in October after a traffic stop on East Avenue. Officers reportedly found several open beer bottles in the back seat of his car.

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But I thought that white people were all innocent angel babies like Niagara said?