Stand-off in Willard

UPDATED WITH VIDEO AND FULL STORY: Woman in critical condition after being shot in head; gunman takes his own life.
Norwalk Reflector Staff
Oct 31, 2013


Update: 9:30 a.m. Thursday. Full story below.

A 19-year-old man’s family wept on the street in Willard after learning the young man shot a woman and then took his own life during a hostage situation at the Family Dollar store.

Pictures of the hostage standoff are posted HERE.

At a press conference following the three-hour standoff, Willard Police Chief Mark Holden said authorities are not clear on why Shawn Schuett entered the store about 5 p.m. Wednesday with a rifle and barricaded himself inside with two women.

“Our negotiator told him, ‘You’re only looking at a robbery charge if you come out right now.’,” Holden said. But, Schuett told the negotiator he didn’t want money.

At some point during the negotiations, Schuett asked police to bring him a chicken dinner from a Chinese restaurant, which authorities purchased but never had the chance to deliver.

“We did everything we could,” Holden said.

“It was a bad situation,” said city manager Brian Humphress, who also spoke briefly at the conference.

Police were first notified by a woman whom Schuett forced at gunpoint, with the rifle pointed to her chest, to drive him to the Family Dollar store, Holden said.

Several emergency calls about Schuett came into the dispatch center following the woman’s cry for help.

Schuett left the vehicle without incident, locked the store’s doors and began to pile shelves and other materials in front of the doors “to slow us down,” Holden said.

Agencies from across the state joined the local police department to assist, including Mansfield Police, Ontario Police, the Ohio State Patrol, Huron County Sheriff’s Office and Norwalk Police, but the situation unfolded quickly at the end with the loss of life.

After Schuett shot the victim and then himself, the other hostage ran out the back door of the store and notified police shots had been fired.

The OSP Special Response Team then blew out the front windows and officers entered the store to find the suspect deceased and the victim lying on the floor with the gunshot wound.

She was immediately transported by ambulance to Mercy Willard Hospital, but police had no information on her condition immediately after the situation ended.

The names of the victim and other hostage were also not released.

“This is all still under investigation...I’m sorry we can’t give out any more information right now,” Holden said.

During the three-hour ordeal, family members and townspeople gathered but were kept far away from the scene.

Firefighters and police alike warned the citizens they were in “the line of fire” and must keep back.

After the incident unfolded, Serena Shepherd, a family member of another woman who was looking after Schuett for the last year, tearfully recalled what a nice boy Schuett was.

“He really was a nice boy. He believed in God, but he had stopped taking his medication,” Shepherd said.

According to Shepherd, Schuett had been living in various homes throughout his youth before ending up at a residence on Egypt Road, just outside Willard where he was staying for the last year.

Willard Police said they had no prior run-ins with him and didn’t know what triggered the violence that shook the normally quiet city.

* * *

Update: 11 p.m. Wednesday Police chief press conference.

Willard Police Chief Mark Holden shared the following details while speaking with reporters tonight:

Sometime after 5 p.m., Shawn Schuett held a woman hostage in a car at gunpoint and demanded she drive him to Family Dollar in Willard. After arriving at the store, he quickly let that woman go and held two female store employees hostage.

At 5:18 p.m., Willard police got the call. Other law enforcement agencies, including a SWAT team, were called in. For the next three hours, negotiators tried to get Schuett to end the stand-off. At one point, he agreed to let them both go.

At 8:18 p.m., one of the female employees ran out a back door, yelling that the gunman was firing shots. At that point, authorities blew out the windows and burst into the store. In the back, they found the other female employee lying on the ground, suffering from a gunshot wound to the head. Schuett also was there on the ground, dead from a self-inflicted gunshot.

The female employee was rushed by ambulance to Mercy Willard Hospital. Her name has not been released.

* * *

Update: 10:20 p.m. Wednesday. More information has been released.

The hostage situation at the Family Dollar store on West Walton Street in Willard ended with a gunman taking his own life.

Former Mansfield resident Shawn Schuett, 19, of Egypt Road in rural Willard, was the gunman.

Prior to that, a female clerk was shot in the head, and she is in critical condition at a hospital. Her name has not been released.

More details will be released as soon as they become available.

* * *

Update: 9:55 p.m. Wednesday. Local law enforcement officers, including Willard police, Huron County Sheriff's deputies and state Highway Patrol troopers, have resolved the hostage situation at the Family Dollar store on West Walton Street in Willard.

Willard police are speaking with reporters at this moment, and more details will be released as soon as they become available.

* * *

Update: 8:51 p.m. Wednesday. A number of officers have reportedly left the scene, according to witnesses.

Also, it appeared possible victims were taken away by ambulance.

Witnesses reported hearing a loud "bang" or explosion about 8 p.m.

Law enforcement agencies are reporting a possible stand-off at a U.S. 224 business in Willard.

There are  reports that a man with a gun attempted an armed robbery at the business.

Reports from the scene have indicated the event might have started as an armed robbery attempt and escalated into what has now been confirmed as a hostage situation, though the exact number of hostages is not clear.

Willard fire personnel were moving onlookers away from the scene.

Keep checking back as details become available.



Hope there's a good guy with a gun in there.


there were plenty of good guys there with guns...BIG GUNS.. Must be 50 cops there. swat team, Willard cops, sheriffs, state patrols, fire dept....lights everywhere... made everyone leave east of Chicago, drug mart, ace hardware,... I just came from there and didn't hear any gun shots.
guy just bought the gun at ace today.

Everyone is fam...

^^^ like x10000


Google is paying 80$ per hour! Just work for few hours & spend more time with friends and family. Yesterday I bought a top of the range Lancia after having made $9458 this month. Its the most-financialy rewarding I’ve had. It sounds unbelievable but you wont forgive yourself if you don’t check it out


bet he blames it on needing pain pills and diapers lol … he will get probation…. needs help … learns his lesson


I am sure his "kin folk" will be on here tomorrow also saying how he is a good person and just made a mistake and didn't mean to hurt anyone. Just needs some help and we should not judge him.


hahaha so ture … he made a mistake and now he needs and has found jesus or some bullshit like that … just shoot the dude get it over with stop wasting tax money to take care of him now


At least one dead.


Is that confirmed????

Anonymous Enigma

Hopefully somebody has their CCW in there, like someone else said. I mean, who's going to be upset if someone parks one in his chest?

...My guess? Not very many people.


Moderators have removed this comment because it contained Personal attacks (including: name calling, presumption of guilt or guilt by association, insensitivity, or picking fights).


Wow, praying for all involved! Let's get a sniper in there and take this jerk out!!!!

Sitting In The ...

Not sounding good, asking for medics


requested medics for two


lifeflight staging at airport


Presto...NOT the time to insult the willard pd. They are risking their lives.


And that's why his/her comment was removed!! Good looking out NR!!!


two lifeflights there now


Praying for a good outcome and a safe return home for the all the cops.


I hope the innocent employees and customers are safe as well as the police involved. What the heck is wrong with people anymore?!?

finally free

Do they know who it was?

Pam Buckingham

They are sayin it was a guy named Shawn Reed, and he is DOA




I have seen him use both names. He has went by Shawn Reed, and the other name. I'm not completely sure what his legal name is. His dad is Matt Reed


Well that's definitely different. That clears a little of the confusion up. I apologize Pam.

free and clean 2 yrs

Please keep in mind he has a family also... Yes, this is horrible and many people risked their lives. But, sean was loved believe it or not. and his family are good people! Yesterday he was sean.. a big cuddly guy. and today ... today is just unbelievable. Please. I apologize for your feelings of rage and disgust. but we have no idea what happened or why. His family is left to read these comments. not HIM. please just offer prayers for all involved. RIP sean.... Im so sorry you felt alone. May God have mercy on your soul

Pam Buckingham

Yes, agreed. We have no idea what happened here today, or why. Prayers go out to his family and loved ones. This paper, and the people commenting on it has a way of bending the truth without knowing anything about the situation or the people involved. I have seen it first hand with my own son and how the reporting this paper does without knowing, or even bothering to gather the facts of a situation. Again, prayers to the familys of all the people involved.

Yall Make Me Sick

You must have known him very well (free and clean 2 years) his name is Shawn. He also didn't take his medication today so that is prolly what it was all about he wasn't in his right mind. Please keep praying for the girl that was life flighted & the other worker who escaped out the back door.


Amen to that!


Sad situation but if he shot a baby like what's being said on Facebook I hope he burns in hell and dont care if his family sees it or not maybe they should of gave him some more hugs