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Police officer kills self after taking another officer hostage

Oct. 26, 2013 at 12:46 PM

JIM THORPE, Pa., Oct. 26 (UPI) -- A police officer in a small town in northeast Pennsylvania shot and killed himself after taking another officer hostage, officials said Saturday.

Carbon County Sheriff Dwight Nothstein said that David Midas, 33, was "having problems," The (Allentown) Morning Call reported. He said that Chris Ondrus, another officer Midas forced into a police car, tried to stop the suicide.

Midas had been a part-time police officer in Lansford, a town of less than 5,000, since 2002 and was also a sheriff's deputy.

Investigators said Midas, who was off duty, got ammunition from the Lansford police staiton Friday evening and forced Ondrus into a police car. The two men drove to Jim Thorpe, Pa., about 10 miles away, where Midas got out of the car just before 8 p.m. and killed himself.

Rose Mary Cannon, the Lansford borough council president, called Midas, who lived in Weatherly, "a very affable young man." Nothstein was not specific about what might have driven him to suicide.

"It seems that it escalated and he just couldn't handle it," Nothstein said. "He shot his dog and he called his parents and told them that he was going to do this and he wasn't going to be alive in 15 minutes."

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