The Darby, Pennsylvania hospital apparently has a no-weapons policy, except for on-duty police. But thankfully, one psychiatric doctor decided to risk his job rather than risk his life.
He still risked his life doing what he did, but at least he and others are still alive. If he hadn’t been armed, he and perhaps others would be dead.
Unfortunately, however, the disgruntled psych patient was able to kill a caseworker before the armed doc shot and critically injured the killer. According to the police chief, it’s a good thing the doc was armed, or else there could have been a mass shooting. The Associated Press reported:
A doctor told police that a patient fatally shot a caseworker at their hospital complex before the doctor pulled out his own gun and exchanged fire with him and wounded him, a prosecutor said Thursday night.
Dr. Lee Silverman, a psychiatrist, was grazed in the temple during the gunfight in his office with patient Richard Plotts, according to Delaware District Attorney Jack Whelan. […]
Staff members had heard loud arguing inside Silverman’s office during the appointment. They opened the door and noticed the patient had a gun pointed at the doctor, so they quietly closed the door and dialed 911, Whelan said. Gunshots were heard a short time later, just before 2:30 p.m. […]
Whelan identified the caseworker killed Thursday afternoon at Mercy Fitzgerald Hospital as Theresa Hunt, 53. Hunt, who was from Philadelphia, had accompanied Plotts to an appointment with Silverman at a psychiatric crisis center next to the hospital in Darby, just southwest of Philadelphia, authorities said.
“When the caseworker was shot, (Silverman) crouched down behind the desk to avoid him being shot,” Whelan said. “He was able to reach for his weapon, and realizing it was a life or death situation, was able to engage the defendant in the exchange of gunfire.”
A struggle ensued and spilled out into the hallway, Whelan said. Another doctor and a caseworker jumped in to help Silverman and secure Plotts’ weapon, he said.
I wonder what the hospital will do now that this doctor violated their no-gun policy. I hope they see how stupid it is and how this man likely saved others’ lives by being armed and using his gun when the need arose. The police were not able to be right in the doctor’s office when the shooting ensued. They should at least allow doctors and employees to be armed. Especially in the psychiatric unit.