Police: 3 shot dead in Iowa State Park; the shooter is also dead

MAQUOKETA, Iowa — On Friday, three family members were shot dead while camping in an eastern Iowa state park, and the suspected shooter died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, it was reported. the police.

Officers responded to reports of the shooting at Maquoketa Caves State Park Campground before 6:30 a.m. Friday, the Iowa Criminal Investigations Division said in a statement. Officers found three people who were shot and killed in a tent at the campground, deputy division manager Mitch Mortvedt said.

All three victims were related, Mortvedt said. He did not provide their names or ages, or explain how they were related.

Officials immediately evacuated everyone from the park, a children’s summer camp on the grounds and the campground. After the evacuation was complete, the only registered camper not found was 23-year-old Anthony Sherwin, Mortvedt said.

“He was known to be armed. Of course, it also increased our awareness,” Mortvedt said. Iowa allows licensed individuals to carry firearms virtually anywhere in the state. Officials did not say whether Sherwin had a permit.

Using a plane to help search the area, law enforcement later found Sherwin dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound in a wooded area of ​​the park. Sherwin came from Nebraska and investigators don’t believe he had a prior relationship with the victims, Mortvedt said.

Mortvedt said he couldn’t say if Sherwin had a criminal record. A search of online court records in Nebraska and Iowa yielded no records of prior criminal behavior.

Autopsies on Sherwin and the victims were to be performed over the weekend, Mortvedt said, and more information would likely be released based on those findings.

The park remained closed on Friday.


Foley reported from Iowa City, Iowa. Beck reported from Omaha, Nebraska.

ABC News

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