COUDERSPORT – Our local community continues to mourn as further information surfaces surrounding the shooting death of Northern Potter music teacher Darlene Sitler at the First United Presbyterian Church in Coudersport on Sunday.
According to witness accounts released by State Police officials, 52-year-old Greg Eldred entered a rear door of the church behind the choir and shot his ex-wife, who was seated at the church organ. Eldred then allegedly exited the church and went to his truck, where one witness stated he placed a handgun on the hood.
Witnesses then say Eldred came back to the church’s side door along 4th Street and demanded to see Sitler. Eldred allegedly told church members, “I want to see her,” and “I want to finish this,” before re-entering the church.
Members of the church attempted to prevent Eldred from re-entering, but according to witnesses he threatened to shoot anyone who got in the way.
Eldred is then accused of returning to the organ pit and shooting Sitler again, who was believed to still be alive at the time.
Members of the congregation were then able to wrestle the gun from Eldred, but not before another round went off into the pews.
Eldred was held by members of the congregation until Trooper Delp of the Coudesport-based State Police arrived and took the defendant into custody.
Police said they recovered (1) .40 caliber FNX handgun; (4) .40 caliber spent casings; and (3) discharged rounds – one of which was located in a wooden back of a pew in the rear of the church. Another round was found on a pillow next to the victim’s head.
Sitler died as the result of gunshot wounds to the head and chest, according to police.
CoudyNews is working to obtain more information in the matter, including verifying or debunking the well-circulated rumor that federal investigators were at the Coudersport school on Friday investigating Mr. Eldred.