Suspect in Horsham strip club shooting identified
HORSHAM, Pa. - October 20, 2013 -- Police have identified the man who they say walked into a strip club in Horsham, Montgomery County and opened fire on two managers.
It happened around 6:30 p.m. Saturday at Double Visions on the 100 block of Easton Road.
The suspect has been identified as 55-year-old Joseph Thiers.
"If that guy had an Uzi, there would have been a lot of people shot because people were standing around, they weren't running away, it sounded like fire crackers, it didn't seem like a gun and the guy wasn't going crazy, he was going bam bam," said Jerritt Boyer, witness.
Boyer says there were about 20 people inside at the time of the shooting.
He says Thiers was buzzed in through an entrance that is reserved for dancers.
Action News has learned the suspect was thrown out of the club earlier in the week and came back for revenge.
Two managers, Phillip and Jason Catagnus were shot in their backs. The brothers, both sons of the owner, were in the middle of a shift change.
Customers drove the men to nearby Abington Memorial Hospital for treatment.
"I jumped in front of one of the dancers and I told them it's not safe. Some people ran outside. It was around the DJ booth area where the second shot got fired and then he went through the back where the dancers only go, that was his escape route," said Boyer.
Police responded so quickly they spotted the suspect leaving the club.
Sources say after the shooting, the Thiers ran outside and fired more shots in the parking lot before leading police on a high speed chase.
They chased after him northbound on Easton Road (Route 611) reaching speeds as high as 80 miles per hours.
More than four miles later, in Warrington, Bucks County, investigators say the suspect crashed into a tree at Stuckert and Warwick roads and was taken into custody.
"It makes you really nervous. It's a quiet neighborhood. I have kids and we're worried, we want to know what's going on," said Jennifer Bradley, resident.
The Bucks County District Attorney's Office says the suspect fired one shot at officers but they did not return fire. No officers were injured.
Thiers was arraigned on charges and remains in custody with bail set at $2.5 million.
Meanwhile the investigation is ongoing and any witnesses to the incident are asked to call the Horsham Township Police Department at 215-643-8284.
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