“My wife’s a hero”: Harrisburg family searching for answers after deadly shooting


HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — A family that was devastated by a shooting last week on Berryhill Street is desperate for answers.

The shooting happened Monday evening on Berryhill Street. A gunman in a car started shooting and Erin Lapean and her six-year-old son Ricky got caught in the crossfire while they were on the porch of their home.

Her husband Richard was there for the whole thing and ducked for cover when he heard the gunfire. He says Erin picked up Ricky and tried to run inside, but a bullet hit and killed her.

“My wife saved his life, because if she wouldn’t have been trying to pick him up to take him in the house that bullet would’ve hit him instead of her,” Lapean said. “My wife’s a hero. She gave her life to save her child’s life.”

Ricky was hurt in the shooting, leaving both of his legs in casts. But he’s now recovering because of his mother’s sacrifice.

Ricky isn’t the couple’s only child. They have four young children together, all left heartbroken by their mother’s loss.

“We’re going through a lot. It’s a big change not having Mommy here to help change diapers and stuff,” Lapean said. “I mean I’ve got an 18-month-old baby in there too. An 18-month-old baby. How do I explain that to him when he gets older? Why his mom is not around.”

Adding to the pain is the lack of answers about who is behind the shooting. Richard says it seems like someone else was the target, and his wife was hit by accident.

Now he’s hoping for answers, and to see arrests made soon.

“You can’t bring my wife back from the dead but she deserves her justice. He deserves his justice. It’s not fair for him to suffer. It’s not fair that she had to suffer,” Lapean said.

He’s determined to get that justice for her.

“I’ve got to stay strong because I’ve got four kids all together and they’re looking at me like ‘Daddy are you ok?'” Lapean said. “We just wanted to raise our children and grow old together that’s what we wanted to do. Now I don’t have that option.”

Harrisburg Police have released a picture of a White Kia Optima that they believe is connected to the shooting.

If you recognize the car that was involved or have any information on this shooting please call 717-558-6900.

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