TEMPLE HILLS, Md. - Funeral services have been arranged for the Prince George's County firefighter who lost his life in a shooting while making a medical welfare check at a home in Temple Hills, Md.
The firefighters forced their way into the home at the request of the homeowner's brother, who feared the man was having a medical emergency. But when the firefighters got inside, the man opened fire with a handgun, police said.
Firefighter-paramedic John Ulmschneider, a 13-year veteran of the department, was the first person inside the home. The 37-year-old was fatally shot. Volunteer firefighter Kevin Swain, 19, survived after being shot four times.
The man who fired the shots has been released from police custody, and he is facing no charges at this time. During a press conference Monday, Prince George's County Police Chief Hank Stawinkski and Prince George's County State's Attorney Angela Alsobrook emphasized that the investigation is ongoing and that they are looking at all evidence.
“We are less than 72 hours into this incident. We can tell you there are any number of pieces of evidence that still have to be analyzed, there are ballistics tests, there are witnesses that still have to be interviewed,” explained Alsobrook.
Stawinski said that there is an absence of facts that would get them to a place where they are confident in placing a charge. First responders frequently force their way into home when they believe there is a life-threatening emergency and Prince George's County Fire Chief Marc Bashoor said that practice absolutely saves lives. However, this shooting could change protocols.
“We’re still in the grieving process so I’m not going to put out a new order or new directive before the funeral. But very shortly after we will have a process that more clearly identifies what our folks should do that doesn't exist today,” explained Bashoor.
The State's Attorney's Office said a grand jury subpoena was issued to the shooter, but it is unclear if or when he would appear in front of a grand jury because he can’t be forced to testify against himself.
Visitation for Ulmschneider is scheduled for Tuesday evening at Saint John's Parish in Hollywood. The funeral Mass will be held on Wednesday, April 20, 2016 at 1:00 pm, also at St. John's Parish. A private family burial will follow the funeral mass.
St. John's Parish
43950 St. John's Road
Hollywood, MD 20636
A repast will be held to celebrate "Skillet's" life following the funeral mass at the:
Hollywood Fire Department
24801 Three Notch Rd.
Hollywood, MD 20636