Vermont State Police have provided more information about the identities of two men shot to death in Woodstock Tuesday, and the mother-son dispute that led to their death.
VSP is identifying the Woodstock police officer who fired his duty weapon as Sgt. Joseph Swanson, a 15-year veteran of the department. Swanson and fellow Woodstock Police Department officer Cpl. Mark Donka responded at about 1:30 p.m. Tuesday to a report of shots fired and a person lying in the driveway at 13 Slayton Terrace.
Sgt. Swanson was first to arrive on scene. Shortly after arriving he was fired upon by a man later identified as Jay Wilson of Woodstock. Sgt. Swanson returned fire. Per standard protocol, Sgt. Swanson subsequently was transported to a hospital for evaluation, where it was determined he had a graze wound on one of his arms. He was treated and released.
Additional details about the officer-involved shooting will be made public following Sgt. Swanson’s formal interview with the Vermont State Police, which is expected to occur early next week. Questions about his employment status should be directed to the Woodstock Police Department.
The victim who was found deceased outside the home is identified as Dieter Seier, 67, of Cornish, New Hampshire. An autopsy performed Wednesday at the Chief Medical Examiner’s Office in Burlington determined the cause of his death was gunshot wounds to the torso, and the manner of death is a homicide.
Preliminary investigation indicates Jay Wilson fatally shot Seier during a family dispute involving Wilson and his mother that related to property and money. Seier, a friend of Wilson’s mother, had accompanied her to the home she owned at 13 Slayton Terrace, where they planned to meet with Jay Wilson, who lived there, and transfer ownership of a vehicle to him. Wilson’s mother was able to reach a safe location following the shooting and was not physically injured.
Members of the Vermont State Police Tactical Services Unit discovered Wilson’s body with a suspected self-inflicted gunshot wound after 11 p.m. while searching the house room by room following a multiple-hour effort to persuade Wilson to leave the residence. TSU members reported hearing a gunshot after they made entry into the home. Police believed Wilson had been in the house since early afternoon, but his whereabouts were unconfirmed until the search of the home was completed. No one else was located inside.
An autopsy is expected to occur Thursday on the body of Jay Wilson. The Vermont State Police will release additional information when it becomes available.