Police: Oley man may also have plotted to kill responders


In the aftermath of a tragedy that rocked Oley Township on Tuesday, police said Stefan Strunk may have plotted to kill first responders after he killed his wife, Joy, and set his home on fire.

"Our investigation probably leads us to believe that that crossed his mind," Chief Ray Serafin, Central Berks Regional Police Department, said Wednesday.

Police said the Amity Township fire chief was first to arrive on the scene on Creeks Edge Road. Police said Strunk had a loaded revolver on him when the chief pulled up.

"It was his back up against the wall, would he have attempted to maybe shoot the firefighter and shoot the officer trying to get away?" said Serafin.

Police said Stefan Strunk motioned toward the woman's body, and as the fire chief proceeded, Stefan shot himself.

Clinical psychologist Edward Michalik, who helps first responders in Berks County cope with tragedy, said people who witness trauma never forget it.

"You feel hopeless and helpless, because... you still still have to continue to do your job while all that is just unfolding before you and you can't do anything," said Michalik.

He said many first responders in Berks take advantage of the counseling he offers.

"There are resources available to them, and there's also resources available to the public," said Michalik.

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