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Victims identified in Muddy Creek Park and Ride shooting

A married couple died Monday, May 29, 2023 after an altercation led to shots being fired by both husband and wife at a park and ride on Perry Highway in Muddy Creek Township, police said.

They were identified Tuesday as Jenna Christine Smith, 28, and Jacob Christian Smith, 31, of Pulaski Township, Lawrence County.

According to police, the incident was an isolated one, and there is no public safety concern.

First responders were dispatched after a passerby reported two gunshot-wound victims at the park and ride at 5:26 p.m.

According to state police, initial reports said Jenna was lying on the ground beside a Chrysler 300, bleeding and unresponsive.

Jacob was found in the passenger seat, police said.

Police said during their investigation, it was discovered that Jenna and Jacob were armed with pistols and exchanged gunfire inside the vehicle following an altercation.

Though lifesaving measures were performed, both died at the scene, police said.

A homicide investigation is underway, state police said. As of 3 p.m. Tuesday, autopsies had not been completed.

State police units from both Butler and Lawrence counties responded to the scene, with state police blocking off both Route 19 ramps to Route 422.

Slippery Rock Volunteer Fire Company ambulance and Portersville-Muddy Creek Township Volunteer Fire Department also responded to the scene.

According to state police from New Castle, Jacob was reported missing on April 12 by Jenna. Police believed at the time that he was suicidal.

The search was canceled two days later, after police said Jacob had been located.

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