PROMPTON — Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) were involved in a nearly four-and-a-half-hour standoff early Monday morning on Balsam Swamp Road with James Sorrentino, 36, which ended in the latter's death after he opened fire on the troopers and they responded in kind.
Three PSP Troopers were placed on administrative leave, as per standard protocol, pending a joint investigation from the Wayne County District Attorney's (DA) Office, Chief County Detective Peter Hower and the PSP Troop R Major Case Team.
According to a press release from DA Patrick Robinson, Sorrentino “...had been suffering from mental health issues and refusing to take his medicine.”
An initial PSP incident report notes police responded to the call just before 3 a.m. after “...the Accused fired a shotgun at members of his family following a domestic dispute.”
DA Robinson stated at a press conference held later that morning there were two members of Sorrentino's family present in the residence at the time of the incident.
Both were able to escape by vehicle without injury and call 9-1-1.
While the incident took place, PSP cautioned the public to avoid the borough and closed access to Balsam Swamp Road.
Summarizing the incident, the DA noted Sorrentino entered and exited the residence several times, refusing to cooperate with troopers and pointing multiple weapons at them.
Around 7:15 a.m., Sorrentino fired at the troopers and was killed in the returned volley. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
“I am very thankful that no member of PSP or the general public were injured in this incident,” said Robinson. “This is an extremely sad situation for the Sorrentino family and our prayers and condolences go out to them.”
Both Robinson and PSP Troop R Captain, Sherman Shadle, stated responding troopers appeared to have exercised great initial restraint in their response to the situation.
“It's an unfortunate situation for the Sorrentino family,” said Sadle, “I'm just happy that my troopers got out of the scene safely and that this unfortunate situation is at an end.”
Greater details to the specifics are expected to be released following the joint investigation into the incident.