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Suspect shot at New Hope police station free on bail, talking to investigators

New Hope police station

Brian P. Riling, 38, of Pipersville, is free on $50,000 bail and cooperating with investigators looking into the March 3 incident at the New Hope police station that left him wounded, his attorney confirmed Friday.

Riling had been arrested shortly before being taken to the station for allegedly trying to intimidate his ex-girlfriend into changing her previous testimony to police about his purported stalking and harassing behavior toward her. He was also charged March 3 with stalking, driving while suspended, and simple assault for attacking the woman, according to a police report, and had been sought on a warrant.

“They’re just charges, they’re allegations, they’re not really connected to the incident you’re exploring,” asserted Riling’s attorney, Richard Fink.

Shortly after 8 p.m. on March 3, a New Hope police officer fired his weapon at Riling while he was in custody at the police station. Multiple sources say Riling became involved in an altercation with two police officers while there, and a third officer came to assist, ultimately shooting him.

Fink confirmed Riling was struck by a single bullet in the abdomen, and has suffered complications from the wound.

“He’s been in an out of the hospital,” Fink said. “He has infections — bad infections.”

New Hope police have been unable to comment on the incident while waiting for Bucks County District Attorney Matthew D. Weintraub to issue a report. The D.A. had been prosecuting the case against Jacob Sullivan, who was sentenced to death Thursday for the rape and murder of a teenage girl, and has said that he wouldn’t rule on the New Hope officer-involved shooting until he could devote his full attention to the matter.

Observers expect a report from Weintraub as early as next week. Attorney Fink agreed.

“The D.A.  just finished the murder case, it’s [the shooting incident] going to be placed on his desk, and in my opinion, it looks like it must be close to being wrapped up,” he said.

Riling is scheduled to appear at a preliminary hearing before Judge Maggie Snow on April 15.

About the author

Charlie Sahner

“Once you can accept the universe as matter expanding into nothing that is something, wearing stripes with plaid comes easy." - Einstein

1 Comment

  • Perhaps I do not have a thorough understanding of the law, but the District Attorney and his assistants in that office can’t handle two cases at the same time? Wish I could have handled all the issues at my job that way.

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