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UPDATE: Carpendale man threated victim hours before fatal shooting

July 7th, 2016 by WCBC Radio

The Cumberland Times News reports accused murderer Phillip Richard Shipley vowed to shoot a pregnant 19-year-old Cumberland woman about an hour-and-a-half before allegedly firing the fatal shot in his Carpendale mobile home, according to court documents. Bernice Amber Crawford, who police said was six weeks pregnant, was shot at close range in the chest with a .40-caliber pistol allegedly fired by the 67-year-old Shipley. She had reportedly arrived there to converse with Shipley. Shipley called the Mineral County 911 Center at 1:49 p.m., informing dispatchers that he had just shot the victim in his mobile home located at 11 Buddy Lane, according to a statement of charges filed in Mineral County Magistrate Court. Shipley is also accused of firing at least three shots into a vehicle that had brought the victim to Shipley's residence. Those shots were reportedly fired immediately after Shipley shot the victim and as he stood at the front door of his residence. The shots penetrated a window, nearly striking the occupants, identified in the documents as Demond Scott, Jason Crawford and Todd Corman. The three were able to escape the gunfire and were not injured. Within minutes, West Virginia Department of Natural Resources Police Officer Mike Lott arrived at the residence. Shipley complied with police orders to exit the mobile home and was taken into custody without incident. Lott then entered the residence and found the victim deceased and lying on the floor of the dwelling. According to the Allegany County 911 Emergency Center, Cumberland Police responded to a disturbance complaint at a High Bedford Street residence at about 12:20 p.m. Wednesday that reportedly involved Shipley, Bernice Crawford and Scott. The court documents indicated the incident was a battery complaint involving Crawford and Shipley.


"The source of the altercation was said to be the defendant's possible anger when learning the father of the victim's unborn child was of African American descent, which prompted the defendant to make the comment, 'I am going to get a gun and shoot you,'" according to the court documents.

"The murder and attempted murders appear to be connected to the battery in which Cumberland PD currently investigated," the court documents stated. "The nature of the 67-year-old man and 19-year-old girl's relationship is still not known."

Investigators said Shipley allegedly assaulted Crawford before Scott then allegedly assaulted Shipley. Cumberland Police charged Scott with second-degree assault Thursday in connection with the previous-day incident on High Bedford Street where Crawford resided. The residence is also listed as Scott's residence, according to Maryland district court documents.

Shipley remained jailed Thursday without bond at the Potomac Highlands Regional Jail in Augusta, awaiting his next court appearance. He is charged with two counts of first-degree murder and three counts of attempted murder.

He was arraigned late Wednesday night by video conference conducted by Mineral County Magistrate Patrick Amoroso.

He was taken to the regional jail earlier in the day after being interviewed by West Virginia State Police, the lead agency in the homicide investigation. Shipley reportedly told state police he did not intend to shoot the victim and had intended to shoot Scott.

Autopsy results are being awaited from the West Virginia State Medical Examiner's Office as part of the ongoing investigation.

Assistance in the investigation was provided by the Mineral County Sheriff's Department, the Cumberland Police Department and the Allegany County Combined Criminal Investigations Unit.

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