Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

National and World

December 26, 2012

NY firemen's killer mapped out plan for slayings

(Continued)

The first police officer who arrived chased and exchanged shots with Spengler, recounting it later over his police radio.

"I could see the muzzle blasts comin' at me. ... I fired four shots at him. I thought he went down," the officer said.

At another point, he said: "I don't know if I hit him or not. He's by a tree. ... He was movin' eastbound on the berm when I was firing shots." Pickering portrayed the officer as a hero who saved many lives.

The audio posted on the website RadioReference.com also has someone reporting "firefighters are down" and saying "got to be rifle or shotgun — high-powered ... semi or fully auto."

Spengler had been charged with murder in his grandmother's death but pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of manslaughter, apparently to spare his family a trial. After he was freed from prison, Spengler had lived a quiet life on Lake Road on a narrow peninsula where Irondequoit Bay meets Lake Ontario.

That ended when he left his burning home Monday morning, armed with his weapons, a lot of ammunition and a measure of hate.

"I'm not sure we'll ever know what was going through his mind," Pickering said.

Services were set for the two Rochester-area volunteer firefighters. Calling hours will be held at Webster Schroeder High School on Friday and Saturday. A funeral service for Chiapperini was scheduled for noon Sunday at the high school, with burial in West Webster Cemetery.

A funeral Mass for Kaczowka will be held at 10 a.m. Monday at St. Stanislaus Church in Rochester. Burial will be at Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Rochester.

___

Esch reported from Albany. Associated Press writer Larry Neumeister in New York City also contributed to this report.

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