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Memorial Service Set For Man Killed In Standoff

A memorial service is set for a Manteo man who was killed during a police standoff Monday night.

Dennis Vonella, who retired as chief inspector for Baltimore County Public Utilities, will have a funeral in Maryland on Sunday. There will also be a memorial service on Monday at the Nags Head Pier House starting at 1:00 p.m.

Vonella was killed after deputies say he shot at them three times during the standoff at his home. Deputies say he had become despondent and indicated he wanted to commit suicide.


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Dare County deputies say a man was shot and killed Monday night after an armed standoff at his home in Manteo.

Deputies say Dennis Vonella was despondent and threatened to commit suicide. They say during the 90 minute standoff the man three times fired at officers.

The standoff started around 9:25 p.m. at a home on Vista Lake Drive in Manteo.

Initially officers coaxed Vonella out of a bedroom and say the man approached them with a weapon. They ordered him to drop the handgun, and he refused. Attempts to use a taser on the man failed. Deputies say Vonella began firing at them and they retreated out of the home.

Deputies, along with Manteo police, Nags Head police and state troopers, then set up a perimeter around the house and made contact with the man via the telephone.

Around 10:50 p.m. deputies say Vonella came out on the back deck and fired at deputies. One officer returned fire and the man went back inside.

A short time later Vonella returned to the deck and fired again. At that point two officers returned fire and shot Vonella.

The sheriff's department says none of the responding officers were injured.

Because of departmental policy, the two officers involved in the shooting have been placed on administrative leave pending the results of an SBI investigation.


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