By Michael R. Moser
Cumberland County sheriff's deputies and investigators responding to a self-inflicted gunshot wound made a surprising discovery when they found stolen property at the shooting scene, leading to the arrest of a burglary suspect.
Scott Ray Goney, 43, 1132 Al Goss Rd., is charged with aggravated burglary, auto burglary, two counts of theft of property and vandalism. Goney appeared in Cumberland County General Sessions Court Dec. 19 and his cases were continued to Jan. 2.
The incident happened on Dec. 8 — a Sunday morning — shortly after 10 a.m. at a Hwy. 127 address in the area of Basses Creek. Deputies were dispatched to the 8000 block on a report that a woman was threatening to shoot herself.
When Sgt. Butch LeFebvre and Cpl. David Bowman arrived on the scene, the officers approached the residence and knocked on the door and the side of the trailer, trying to get the person or persons inside to come to the door. The officers heard movement inside but no one responded.
The officers then made two separate announcements on a patrol car's public address system without results. As they approached the trailer a second time, the officers head a gunshot inside the trailer and retreated to their patrol cars.
Moments later a second shot was heard from inside, followed by a woman opening the trailer door and collapsing onto the front porch. The woman was suffering from a serious gunshot wound to the face.
A man identified as Dustin Dixon, 24, Genesis Rd., exited behind the woman and was briefly taken into custody for safe keeping while the trailer was searched for additional persons.
Tonya Sue Denny, 38, of 8025 Hwy. 127 S, was rushed to Cumberland Medical Center and later transported to a regional trauma center where she remains hospitalized. Investigator David Hamby said he expects the Denny to remain hospitalized for a very lengthy time.
Deputies determined from evidence at the scene that Dixon was at the trailer in an attempt to talk his mother-in-law out of harming herself and to get her to surrender the weapon to him.
Instead, Denny reportedly shot herself in a rear bedroom where deputies found evidence of the shooting. The rifle was found in a hallway a few feet away.
Also found in the trailer were 20 rounds of ammunition, a luggage set, DVR, Pixma photo printer, HP copier, fax and printer combo, hunting backpack, tool set and GPS.
LeFebvre recognized some of the items that had been reported stolen in a residential burglary in Wyndridge Estates off Plateau Rd. Investigators David Gibson and David Hamby were called to the scene to investigate the shooting and the recovery of stolen property.
Dixon was released after it was determined he had no involvement with the stolen property or with his mother-in-law's self-inflicted shooting.
Further investigation led to the arrest of Goney for the burglary of a vehicle owned by Joe Allred of Sparta Dr. and the home of David Mooreless on Fox Den Lane.