Barry K. Stewart, 55, is accused of killing a woman and a man at BridgeView Real Estate Services in New York’s Watertown, according to the New York Daily News. At around 2 p.m. on Wednesday, the former BridgeView Real Estate Services agent reportedly drove up to the real estate agency’s office in a gray 2020 Ford F-150 pickup truck and started shooting.
“Caller states Barry Stewart is there and shot everyone,” a dispatcher said through Jefferson County emergency radio transmissions. “Caller apparently locked herself in the bathroom. There are two other people there with her.”
Maxine Quigg, 50, and Terence O’Brien, 53, of Black River, NY were the two victims killed in the shooting. Both were described as dedicated, professional Realtors and caring parents in their agent bios.
“Maxine was that mom that put notes in her kid’s lunch boxes and treated even the smallest holiday as a reason to celebrate,” reads her online agent profile. “To this day, Maxine infuses everything she does with the same enthusiasm and care.”
After the shooting, Stewart tried to flee the scene while a State Police K9 unit chased him down Route 11B to the town of Dickinson in Franklin County. He was found off the roadway with a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
“This is the type of thing we far too frequently see on the national news. We never think it could happen in the City of Watertown, but today it did,” Watertown Mayor Jeff Smith said in the moments after the shooting. “This is an unspeakable, senseless tragedy, where two innocent people were gunned down in a vicious act of violence. My heart breaks for the victims, their families and our entire community who I know share in my disbelief that this could happen here in Watertown.”
Also an agent at BridgeView, Stewart was listed as a 25-year-old army veteran who joined the military to pay for college in his agent profile.
While discussions of agent safety often center around not going to open houses alone and having alarms activated on one’s phone, shootings in general have been on the rise in the United States — 2020 saw 617 mass shootings, a high unseen since 2014.