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JACKSONVILLE, Florida. – Police in Chesapeake, Va., just outside Norfolk, said there was no clear motive as to why a Walmart official would open fire inside the superstore on Tuesday night.
He killed six people and then himself, wounding several others, according to the police. Investigators have declined to publicly identify the shooter until his family is notified.
“Our 911 dispatch center received the first call at 10:12 p.m. last night,” Chesapeake Police Chief Mark Solesky told reporters Wednesday morning. “The first officers arrived on the scene within two minutes at 10:14 a.m. and entered the store approximately 2 minutes later.”
Solesky said the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives would help with the investigation.
The store in Chesapeake, Virginia’s second-largest city, was busy just before Tuesday night’s attack as people stocked up ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday, a shopper said. on the local TV channel.
Employee Briana Tyler said the 15-20 person overnight stocking crew had just gathered in the break room to go over the morning plan. She said the meeting was about to start and a team leader said, “Okay guys, we’ve got a light night ahead of us,” when another team leader, identified by Walmart as Andre Bing, turned and opened fire on personnel.
“It was by the grace of God that a bullet missed me,” Tyler said. “I saw the smoke coming out of the gun and I literally saw bodies falling. It was crazy.”
Officials said on the city’s Twitter account that three of the dead, including the shooter, were found in the break room. One of the victims was found near the storefront. Three others were taken to hospitals where they died of their injuries.
It’s another mass shooting across America, just days after police said a gunman killed five people at an LGBTQ+ club in Colorado Springs, leading people to fear that no place is safe.
Many wonder if it could have been avoided.
“In most of these cases, there were warning signs,” said Dr. Justin D’Arienzo, a clinical psychologist from Jacksonville. “Someone saw something disturbing and didn’t say anything.”
He notes that mass shooters typically exhibit outward behavior days, weeks, or even years before their attacks. He said there are typical profiles of active shooters, although that’s not always the case and the types aren’t mutually exclusive.
“The first type is someone who is psychopathic or antisocial and has a vendetta against someone,” he said. “The second type is paranoid schizophrenia. And the third type is someone who has been chronically traumatized.
Across the country, there is much talk of mass shootings in schools, churches and large public gatherings, and with good reason. However, data shows that most mass shooters target workplaces, offices where they currently work or have recently worked and have been fired.
The News4JAX I-TEAM reviewed an analysis by The Violence Project which shows nearly a third (31.5%) of mass shootings occurred in the workplace. Motivation?
Researchers say the peak is an employment issue, then an interpersonal conflict, followed by economic and legal issues.
Seventy-six percent of shooters showed signs of a seizure and 47% had disclosed plans prior to the attack
So what should people pay attention to?
“Chronic absenteeism, someone complaining over and over again, a drastic change in behavior, they’re using alcohol and drugs at work,” D’Arienzo said.
He added that stress during the holidays can make things worse.
He reiterated that staff must practice “seeing something, saying something” and authorities must take threats seriously.
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In wake of Walmart shooting, data shows workplaces are top target for active shooters
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