crimesider

Va. army captain sought in 4 deaths found dead in Pa.

Leonard John Egland
AP Photo
Leonard John Egland
AP Photo

(CBS/AP) JAMISON, Pa. - Army officer Leonard John Egland, who was suspected of killing four people in Pennsylvania and Virginia, was found dead in a wooded area Sunday in Bucks County, Pa. after a manhunt during Hurricane Irene.

After several tours of combat duty, Egland recently returned to Virginia, where he was believed to be on active duty in the US Army at Fort Lee. But authorities say the 37-year-old went on a killing spree, reports CBS station KYW.

Authorities in Virginia said Egland had earlier killed his former wife, her boyfriend and the boyfriend's young son before taking his own young daughter on a frantic drive through Irene's winds and rains into Pennsylvania.

Bucks County District Attorney David Heckler says in Buckingham Township, Pa, Egland shot and killed his former mother-in-law, 66-year-old Barbara Ruehl.

Egland's daughter believed to be about 6 years old, was abandoned Saturday night by Egland, unharmed, at St. Luke's Hospital in Quakertown. A note was left with the child, authorities said. However, its contents were not released.

Heckler said a nurse or orderly confronted Egland but the Army officer flashed a pistol and got away. The hospital worker called police with a description of the suspect and his black pickup truck.

After a lengthy manhunt and intense standoff with police, Egland was found dead Sunday afternoon. Police say a rifle, hand gun and ammunition were found near his body.

Though Egland was killed of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot, an investigation into his death is ongoing.

Egland had recently returned from the latest of three deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan, Heckler said.