Testing under way on brain of man in Pa. shootings

AP News
Posted: Jul 13, 2011 2:59 PM
Testing under way on brain of man in Pa. shootings

Medical testing was under way Wednesday to determine if a brain tumor contributed to an ex-convict's deadly shooting rampage before he was killed by police.

The pituitary gland of Mark Geisenheyner, 51, was removed during an autopsy and sent for tests, said Trish Cofiell, a spokeswoman for the Delaware County medical examiner.

Coroner Fredric Hellman was told by an investigator and a member of Geisenheyner's family that he had a tumor, Cofiell said. Hellman has not confirmed that, she said, adding that test results may not be available for weeks.

The coroner also has sent for Geisenheyner's medical records, Cofiell noted.

Geisenheyner died in a standoff with police on July 4, two days after he shot five people in neighboring Montgomery County, in suburban Philadelphia.

Authorities say Geisenheyner was seeking revenge over an insurance scam when he barged into the Douglass Township vacation home of Paul and Monica Shay and opened fire.

Geisenheyner believed Paul Shay had cheated him out of his full share of proceeds from the scheme, police said. Authorities are still investigating the claim.

The Shays, who lived in New York City, were at the house for the long holiday weekend with nephew Joseph Shay, 43; his girlfriend, Kathryn Erdmann, 37, of Fall River, Mass.; and her 2-year-old son, Gregory.

Monica Shay, Joseph Shay and the toddler died of injuries sustained in the rampage. Paul Shay and Erdmann were critically wounded.

After the shooting, Geisenheyner went to the home of a friend in Trainer, just outside Philadelphia. He confessed to the slayings and later fell asleep, at which time the friend sneaked out and called authorities.

SWAT team members stormed the house and killed Geisenheyner following a six-hour standoff.