The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

Local News

December 27, 2013

Man shoots CEO, then kills self

President's injuries non-life threatening

WESTVILLE — One man is dead and another injured in an attempted work place murder and suicide at a chemical plant in southern Vermilion County.

Vermilion County sheriff’s deputies and investigators responded to the DynaChem plant just south of Westville to a report of a shooting around 2:30 p.m. Thursday.

Sheriff Pat Hartshorn said a longtime employee with more than 20 years of experience at the company fired two shots at the company president and CEO, Keith Rife.

Hartshorn said Rife was taken to Carle Foundation Hospital in Urbana for treatment. The gunshot wounds — which were to Rife’s head and hip — were considered non-life threatening.

The longtime employee — a resident of rural Georgetown — turned the gun on himself after firing shots at the company president. He was pronounced dead at the scene. The employee’s name was not immediately released Thursday night as the Vermilion County Coroner’s Office attempted to locate his next of kin.

According to early investigations at the scene, the longtime employee was in the company president’s office for a job review at the time of the shooting. Hartshorn said the employee at some point reached into a briefcase and pulled out the gun, firing the shots at Rife before shooting himself.

A motive for the shooting was not immediately being released, Hartshorn said.

The sheriff’s department investigators cleared the DynaChem scene just before 6 p.m. Thursday. Investigators planned to go to the employee’s home and look over his vehicle Thursday evening as well.

DynaChem Inc. is located between Westville and Georgetown just off County Road 1000N. The company, open since 1964, handles the manufacturing of chemical epoxy resins, specialty chemicals and custom manufacturing.

As of two years ago, just less than 50 people were employed at the company.



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