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Man charged with murder after infant daughter shot with crossbow, authorities say

COLESVILLE, N.Y. (WBNG/Gray News) - A New York man is facing murder and attempted murder charges after authorities allege he fired a crossbow at his wife, injuring her and killing their infant daughter.

Broome County Sheriff’s deputies and paramedics responded around 5:15 a.m. Monday to a report that a woman and an infant had been shot with a crossbow at a home in the Town of Colesville, WBNG reports.

The initial investigation showed that 26-year-old Patrick D. Proefriedt got into an argument with his wife and fired a crossbow while she was holding their 3-week-old daughter, according to the sheriff’s office. The broadhead crossbow bolt hit the child in the upper torso, exiting the armpit before striking the woman in the chest.

The sheriff’s office said Proefriedt allegedly removed the bolt and tried to stop his wife from calling 911. He fled the scene in a pickup truck before deputies arrived.

Responding deputies secured the scene, located the weapon and attempted life-saving measures on the infant before bringing her out to paramedics. The infant, identified in a press release as Eleanor Carey, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The woman was taken to the hospital to be treated for her injuries.

Broome County deputies formed a perimeter around the area with help from the New York State Police and the Chenango County Sheriff’s Office. They used multiple patrol units and aerial drones to locate Proefriedt.

The suspect was found in the woods less than a mile from the house after his truck got stuck in the mud. He was taken into custody and charged with second-degree murder and attempted murder along with criminal contempt for violating an order of protection.

“This is one of the most heartbreaking and senseless crimes committed in this community in recent memory,” said Broome County Sheriff Fred Akshar in the press release. “Our thoughts are with the family of this innocent 3-week-old girl. I commend the quick and decisive action of our Law Enforcement division in responding to this tragedy and ensuring Mr. Proefriedt did not escape justice.”

Proefriedt remains in custody as he awaits arraignment. He has a history of domestic incidents with the adult victim and an active stay-away order of protection in place.

The investigation is ongoing.

Copyright 2023 WBNG via Gray Media Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

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