WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWNY) - The suspect is dead. State police confirm for 7 News that 55 year old Barry Stewart of West Carthage died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Stewart was the subject of a police manhunt Wednesday afternoon after he allegedly gunned down 2 people inside a Watertown business where he once worked.
According to state police, troopers tried to pull over Stewart’s pickup truck on Route 11B in the town of Dickinson in Franklin County.
They said the pickup swerved off the road and crashed. Police said Stewart then shot himself.
Francis Brothers, who owns the nearby Nannette’s Rise N Shine Cafe, saw some of those final moments.
”It was just car after car of state police,” he said. “There was St. Lawrence County Sheriffs, just bumper to bumper chaos going as fast as you could imagine a vehicle going.”
Stewart’s death ended a manhunt that lasted nearly 4 hours.
It all began shortly after 2 p.m. at BridgeView Real Estate Services at 145 Clinton Street. Two people were shot to death inside the business. Stewart had previously been a realtor for BridgeView and left in March.
Wednesday night, police released the names of the victims. They are 50 year old Maxine Quigg of Wellesley Island and 53 year old Terence O’Brien of Black River. Both victims worked at the Bridgeview Real Estate Agency.
The deaths rocked the north country community.
Watertown Mayor Jeff Smith said, “This is the type of thing we far too frequently see on the national news. We never think it could happen in the City of Watertown, but today it did. This is an unspeakable, senseless tragedy, where two innocent people were gunned down in a vicious act of violence. My heart breaks for the victims, their families and our entire community who I know share in my disbelief that this could happen here in Watertown.”
Lance Evans of the Jefferson-Lewis Board of REALTORS said, “We are deeply saddened by the events today at Bridgeview Real Estate in Watertown which resulted in the tragic deaths of friends and colleagues. Our thoughts and prayers are with their loved ones. It is a tragedy for our real estate community and we express our deepest sympathies to the families of the departed. We will be working to heal from these events in the weeks ahead.”
Both Evans and Smith thanked the agencies which responded to the scene.