USA Olympian Michael Barisone in Custody–No Formal Charges Filed–in Alleged Shooting of Woman Training at New Jersey Dressage Center

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Michael Barisone (left) with USA dressage team mates Debbie McDonald, Courtney King-Dye and Steffen Peters at Hong Kong for the Beijing Olympics. © 2008 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

Aug. 8, 2019

By KENNETH J. BRADDICK

United States Olympian Michael Barisone was in custody Thursday, a suspect in the shooting of a woman training at his New Jersey dressage center. The Morris County Posecutor’s Office reported no formal charges have been filed as of late Thursday morning.

The woman with two gunshot wounds to the chest was reported in stable condition after surgery at the Morristown Medical Center.

The shooting occurred at Hawthorne Farm, the Long Valley training center where Michael Barisone has long been based about 55 miles/88 km west of New York City.

Police were reported trying to unravel the circumstances that led to the shooting, sources said, including the involvement of persons associated with the rider in training.

The Morris County Prosecutor’s Office told dressage-news.com that as of Thursday morning no formal charges had been filed in the case.

Michael, 54 years old, was a member of the U.S. team at the 2008 Olympics, but did not ride as teams were restricted to three combinations. His team mates who did ride were Debbie McDonald on Brentina, Steffen Peters on Ravel and Courtney King-Dye on Mythilus.

He coached Allison Brock on the U.S. team that won bronze at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

“At approximately 2:15 p.m. (US Eastern time),” the prosecutor’s office reported, “police were dispatched to 411 West Mill Road on a report of shots fired. Members of the Washington Township Police Department responded quickly, took the suspect into custody and secured the scene.

“Law enforcement located one individual who had sustained what appeared to be multiple gunshot wounds. Two additional injured individuals were also located at the scene, including the suspect.”

The individual to have been wounded was reported by multiple sources to be Lauren Kanarak.

Michael Barisone and one other person were reported to have been injured but not by gunshots at the 53-acre/21.4 ha farm.

Lauren Kanarak’s Facebook page said she attended Livingston Senior High School in New Jersey, in 1998; studied legal procedure at Guilford College, in Greensboro, North Carolina and political science at Hollins University, Roanoke, Virginia.

She reported she was competing in dressage and was a U.S. Dressage Federation bronze medalist.

In addition to the New Jersey center, Barisone Dressage also operates a training center in Loxahatchee, Florida, a community with extensive equestrian operations and adjacent to Wellington.