NBC10.com - Monique Braxton
49-year-old Andrew Cairns is charged with trying to kill police during a standoff outside his Warminster apartment Tuesday night. Cairns' girlfriend called police and claimed the suspect attempted to kill himself, according to official documents. When policed arrived, shots were fired, one of which killed 89-year-old Marie Zienkewicz who lived below Cairns. It is still unclear whether the victim was shot by Cairns or police. Cairns' bond is set at ten million dollars. NBC10's Monique Braxton reports.
Bail has been set at $10 million for the suspect in a Bucks County police standoff that left an elderly woman dead following a shootout with officers.
Investigators say that the suspect, Andrew Graham Cairns, 49, surrendered about six hours after he fired multiple rounds at police and then barricaded himself and his wife inside his apartment in the 2000 building of the Jefferson on the Creek complex on 675 Street Road.
Police say they negotiated the surrender.
Warminster Township Police say they were called to the suspect's building around 4 p.m. yesterday for a domestic disturbance. Less than four hours later, police were called back to his residence for reports of shots fired. When police arrived, Cairns allegedly opened fire on officers. They fired at least four rounds in return. During the gun battle, a downstairs neighbor, an 89-year-old woman, identified as Marie Zienkewicz, was shot once and killed, although investigators are unsure if the bullet came from the gun of the suspect or police.
Ashley Smith told NBC10 she was coming home from work when her husband called her on her cell to tell her one of their neighbors was firing at police.
"He said he's in apartment 2005 and he's barricaded inside," said Smith.
Officials say the suspect's wife was inside the apartment with the man early in the evening, but was able to escape the apartment unharmed.
Police evacuated about 40 residents from the building. Those residents were sent to to the William Tennent High School gymnasium where an evacuation shelter was set up by the Red Cross. Residents were allowed to return home around 4 a.m. Wednesday.
Cairns is charged with criminal homicide, aggravated assault and reckless endangerment. He must post $1 million or 10-percent of his bail to be released.
A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Thursday, February 29 at 9 a.m.