Police: Wife shot husband after argument
A South Strabane Township woman accused of shooting her husband multiple times in the abdomen and chest Tuesday night had resided in the township less than a week after moving to Pennsylvania from Texas.
Latasha Stapp, a resident of 3008 Clubhouse Circle in the Stone Creek plan along Route 19, was charged with attempted homicide, aggravated assault, discharge of a firearm into an occupied structure and four counts of reckless endangerment in the shooting of 27-year-old Tyler Stapp. Detective Ken Torboli said he was taken to UPMC-Presbyterian hospital in Pittsburgh, where he was undergoing surgery Wednesday and was listed in critical condition.
Sgt. Drew Hilk said Latasha Stapp had moved here just Saturday. Her husband had lived here since June, working with explosives in the gas-drilling industry, Torboli said. He said Latasha Stapp had lived in Ohio and Oklahoma before moving here from Texas.
The couple’s two children, ages 5 and 7, were in the apartment when the shots were fired.
“The officers did a good job getting there quickly and making sure the kids were safe and secure,” Torboli said. “The family lived in a two-bedroom, one-floor apartment, so they lived in close quarters.”
The children were placed in the custody of Washington County Children and Youth Services and were in temporary foster care until arrangements could be made to release them to family members.
Torboli said the couple apparently had an argument in their bedroom prior to the shooting.
Police were called about 8:45 p.m. after the 911 center received multiple calls of shots being fired and a man outside a neighbor’s house saying that he had been shot by his wife.
Hilk and Officers Seth Kelley, Timothy Gray and Chad Brogley arrived and saw a woman matching the description of the alleged shooter, later identified as Latasha Stapp, standing in the middle of the street, crying and talking on a cellphone. Police ordered her to get on the ground and took her into custody.
Police entered the neighbor’s apartment and found a large amount of blood drops that led to a bedroom where they found Tyler Stapp wearing a T-shirt that was soaked with blood from the chest down.
Latasha Stapp reportedly told Hilk that she shot her husband inside the apartment and again outside the apartment. Police found a spent shell casing near the front door of the Stapps’ apartment, as well as blood on the floor and on the bed in the couple’s bedroom, where another spent shell casing was found. Several guns were in the bedroom closet.
Police found a 9 mm handgun in the bushes outside the apartment building, where Latasha Stapp reportedly had told investigators she had thrown the weapon. Torboli said the gun may be owned by Tyler Stapp.
Latasha Stapp was arraigned before District Judge Jay Weller and placed in the Washington County jail on $250,000 bond. A preliminary hearing is set for March 25 before Weller.
This is the second shooting in the housing plan with a connection to the gas-drilling industry.
LoydRay Stanfeld of Clyde, Texas, was sentenced in 2010 to less than two years in jail for the Sept. 9, 2009, shooting of James Willis of Bowie, Texas, at the home the men shared on Shawnee Drive in Stone Creek. The men lived there while working on gas wells in the area.
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