Reinholds Road nurse, 22, stayed calm after Sunday shooting, brother says

By on March 2, 2016

 

The 22-year-old woman struck by a stray bullet on Sunday is a nurse who survived by telling others how to treat the wound to her neck, her brother said.

“All of a sudden we hear a pop and it sounded like a light bulb pop or a balloon pop, and I didn’t think much of it,” Conrad Auker said in an interview with CBS 21.

His sister, Jamie Horning, had been sitting at a kitchen table and fell to the floor holding her neck after being hit by the bullet, Auker told the station. But she began giving instructions on how to treat her to others in the house on the 500 block of Reinholds Road in East Cocalico Township.

“It’s just crazy she kept calm,” Auker told CBS 21. “She just got shot and she was telling people what to do.”

His comments are the first to come from the family following what police have described as a freak accident Sunday afternoon.

The bullet that struck Horning was likely a stray shot that had been fired by a group of friends shooting at a tree stump less than a half-mile away, on the 800 block of South Ridge Road.

Photo by Heather Stauffer/LNP Jamie Horning, 22, suffered a gunshot wound to the neck as she sat at her kitchen table in the family home on the 500 block of Reinholds Road in East Cocalico Township.

Photo by Heather Stauffer/LNP
Jamie Horning, 22, suffered a gunshot wound to the neck as she sat at her kitchen table in the family home on the 500 block of Reinholds Road in East Cocalico Township.

East Cocalico Township police Cpl. Terry Arment said Horning has been transferred from Hershey Medical Center to a hospital in Philadelphia. Auker said his sister is in stable condition, and is recovering.

On social media, well wishers and friends are wishing her a speedy recovery. “Jamie has a cheerful personality, a true love for God and a big heart for others. Praying for God’s healing in her life!” Tiffany Bievenour wrote on Facebook.

A bio of Horning identifies her as a registered nurse who studied nursing at the Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences.

East Cocalico police have said they are investigating the shooting but had not filed charges in the case as of Tuesday.

The Pennsylvania Game Commission regulates shooting of firearms during hunting seasons and sets up safety zones around occupied buildings. However, the state does not regulate discharging firearms outside of hunting seasons, leaving it instead to municipalities.

And East Cocalico Township and neighboring West Cocalico Township do not have local ordinances limiting the discharge of weapons, Arment said. Nearby Adamstown and Denver boroughs do.

One of the bullets shooters fired at a tree stump in a pasture behind their East Cocalico Township home Sunday missed badly, or ricocheted, they said.

It struck Horning in the neck in the kitchen of her home in the 500 block of Reinholds Road, north of Denver, police said.

“Obviously it was an accident,” said 24-year-old Andrew Richards, who lives at 830 S. Ridge Road, less than half a mile across a pasture and a sizable wooded area from the woman’s home. “A round missed a target or something. We’ve been trying to piece it together directionally and all that.”

“I’ve been keeping her in my prayers,” he said of the woman, calling the incident a shock.

One of his roommates, 23-year-old Kyle Sholly, said he and Richards were shooting with five or six friends at the time. They talked with police shortly afterwards.

Sholly declined to give any other details of the incident. But another man pulled his car up to the Ridge Road home Monday. He declined to give his name but said he was one of the target shooters.

“We were shooting down at that stump down there,” he said, indicating a fenced-in pasture below the house. It wasn’t known if any animals were in the area.

The group hadn’t seen any houses through the trees, he said, and he thinks the bullet must have ricocheted off a rock or something.

The tragedy did not surprise neighbors.

They say risky outdoor shooting has plagued the area the past few years and despite their complaints, has grown worse in recent months.

The neighbors insist they aren’t “anti-gun people,” but target shooting and hunting in the area of South Ridge and Reinholds roads in some cases has been done recklessly.

“I knew sooner or later something was going to happen,” said Mike Firestone, who lives on Reinholds Road. “Sooner or later, your luck runs out. People get bolder, and careless.”

Several neighbors said they have complained about target shooting at a few homes in the neighborhood.

A small housing development on Buena Vista Lane off of Miller Road is not far from the shooting site. Some neighbors have horses, dogs and other animals.

They worry mostly about safety, but also hate the loud noise of the frequent shooting.

“I’m afraid to walk out of my house,” said Barbara Levering, who lives in the 500 block of Reinholds Road. “I can’t work in the garden. I’m afraid to put the horses out.”

Very loud gunfire woke her at 2:30 a.m. Saturday. “I went to look if my barn exploded,” she said.

Firestone said he and a family member were splitting firewood in his driveway three or four years ago when they heard gunfire.

“Pellets from a shot gun were hitting trees 10 feet away from us,” he said. A Pennsylvania Game Commissioner gave two men written warnings in that case.

Ryan Robinson and Heather Stauffer are LNP staff writers.

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