Pair arrested after mall gunshot
Two men – allegedly a pair of brothers with criminal records – led heavily armed police on an Altoona-area manhunt Wednesday afternoon after reports that one shot at another man in the Logan Valley Mall parking lot, officers and witnesses said.
Logan Township police identified the pair as Kevin Morrow, 37 according to court documents, of 118 Willow Ave., and his brother, Larry Morrow, 29, for whom an address isn’t available.
Altoona police arrested them near the intersection of Union Avenue and Mansion Boulevard, nearly two miles from the parking lot where the search began.
Police first received reports of gunfire in the mall parking lot Wednesday afternoon, with witnesses describing a shot fired during an argument among four people in two cars. Debbie Turek of Johnstown, waiting at a nearby bus stop shortly after the shooting, said she heard several people arguing, then a gunshot, but no one was injured.
The alleged shooter, his companion and the two victims left the scene, Logan Township Police Chief Ron Heller said.
“Our victims fled the area. We’d probably like to talk to them,” Heller said.
After the shooting, officers found the silver, Florida-registered minivan allegedly connected with the gunman in the Kmart parking lot. With curious onlookers watching the sudden police presence, officers cleared shoppers and employees from the store.
“I looked up and saw 10 cops,” one Kmart worker said.
Some customers had to watch from the parking lot, their possessions still inside.
State police and officers from Altoona, Logan Township and the Blair County Sheriff’s Office, some wearing body armor and wielding riot shields and assault rifles, gathered and searched the store while nervous employees smoked and swapped theories outside.
Security footage later revealed the two suspects had allegedly entered the store, but left before police arrived.
“We missed them by minutes,” Heller said.
Police fanned out across nearby businesses, checking stores and restaurants while some responded to reports of customers matching the armed suspects’ descriptions.
Officers seized the silver van, where they later found a .380-caliber automatic handgun with the serial number removed, Heller said.
Police from several departments expanded the search, sweeping nearby neighborhoods. The Altoona Police Department shared a surveillance photo, allegedly of the Morrow brothers, and urged followers to report possible sightings.
Sometime between 5 and 5:30 p.m., Altoona officers patrolling near Union Avenue spotted the suspects, who were quickly surrounded and captured without incident, Heller said.
Kevin and Larry Morrow were taken to the Logan Township police office, where they would go on to the Blair County jail and await arraignment Tuesday night, Heller said.
Officers were still considering the case about 7 p.m., he said, but likely charges include reckless endangerment, unlicensed possession of a concealed firearm, possession of a gun with mutilated serial number and possession of a gun by a felon.
Both have felony records, Heller said, though a search of Pennsylvania court records returned no felony convictions.
Online records from Florida, where at least one of the brothers may have recently lived, indicate they had faced past charges, including battery.
Mirror Staff Writer Ryan Brown is at 946-7457.