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Disgruntled city worker kills 12 in Virginia beach resort; suspect also killed

Disgruntled city worker kills 12 in Virginia beach resort; suspect also killed

Postby smix » Sat Jun 01, 2019 3:57 pm

Disgruntled city worker kills 12 in Virginia beach resort; suspect also killed
Reuters

URL: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-virg ... SKCN1T12JX
Category: Crime
Published: May 31, 2019

Description: VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (Reuters) - A disgruntled public utility employee opened fire with a handgun on co-workers at a municipal building in Virginia on Friday afternoon, killing 12 people and wounding at least four before he was fatally shot by police, authorities said. The mass shooting in the coastal resort of Virginia Beach was the deadliest instance of U.S. gun violence since November 2018, when a dozen people were slain at a Los Angeles-area bar and grill by a gunman who then killed himself. Virginia Beach Police Chief James Cervera said the suspect in Friday’s carnage was armed with a .45-caliber pistol equipped with a “sound suppressor” device and “extended” ammunition magazines he used to reload repeatedly during the attack. Survivors recounted scenes of pandemonium and fear that erupted as gunshots rang out, and workers scurried frantically for cover. “We just heard people yelling and screaming to get down,” Megan Banton, a public utilities worker, told television station WAVY-TV, recalling that she and co-workers barricaded themselves in their office. “We put the desk up against the door because we didn’t know if they were coming in. We were just hoping that it would be over soon, and then we heard the cops yelling up the steps.” The first victim was shot in a vehicle outside the public works and utilities building at the city municipal center before the suspect entered that building and “immediately and indiscriminately fired upon all the victims,” Cervera said. The chief said the suspect engaged in a “long-term gun battle” with four police officers who confronted him inside, preventing the gunman from “committing more carnage in that building.” One officer was wounded in the shootout, but his bullet-proof vest saved his life, Cervera said. Authorities said the gunman ultimately was shot by police and was declared dead at a hospital.
‘MORE QUESTIONS THAN ANSWERS’
Cervera said the suspect was a longtime public utilities employee, and described him as “disgruntled,” but declined to say more about what may have precipitated the attack. “We have more questions than we really have answers,” he told reporters about two hours after the shooting. The shooting was believed to be the deadliest act of workplace gun violence in the United States since February, when a factory worker shot five colleagues to death in Aurora, Illinois, just after he was let go from his job. Authorities have determined the suspect’s identity but are not ready to make the name public, Cervera said. “We will release his name once,” the chief said. “Then he will be forever referred to as ‘the suspect,’ because our focus now is on the dignity and respect of the victims and their families.” The bloodshed unfolded, according to police, at Building Two of the municipal center complex, where office space for more than 400 employees houses information technology, public works, planning and utilities departments next door to City Hall. The complex lies several miles inland from the town’s popular seashore, situated on the Atlantic coast at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay. Southeast Virginia’s most populous city has roughly 450,000 year-round residents. “This is the most devastating day in the history of Virginia Beach,” Mayor Bobby Dyer said at a news conference with the police chief. “The people involved are our friends, co-workers, neighbors, colleagues.” Arriving in town a short time after the shooting, Virginia Governor Ralph Northam said: “This is just a horrific day.” “Our hearts ache for victims of the senseless violence that has been inflicted on the community,” he told a news conference hours later. In Washington, a White House spokesman said President Donald Trump had been briefed on the shooting and “continues to monitor the situation.”



Police say Virginia Beach gunman was disgruntled city engineer
Reuters

URL: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-virg ... SKCN1T2354
Category: Crime
Published: June 1, 2019

Description: VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (Reuters) - The gunman who killed 12 people at a Virginia Beach municipal building before dying in a gun battle with police was identified on Saturday as a disgruntled city engineer and co-worker of most of the victims. All but one of the victims from the mass shooting in the coastal resort community were employed by the city, officials said at a news conference, while the other was a contractor seeking a permit. Four people were wounded.

dewayne-craddock.jpg

The gunman, DeWayne Craddock, had worked for the city’s public utilities department for about 15 years, Virginia Beach Police Chief James Cervera said at a news conference. Police said he used a .45 caliber handgun equipped with a “sound suppressor” device and extended ammunition magazines that he used to reload during the attack. They said more weapons were found at the scene and at Craddock’s home. Two police supervisors from a building across the street arrived within minutes of the first shots, Cervera said, and the suspect was killed after a lengthy gun battle. Virginia Beach police had trained for a mass shooting. “You cannot replicate the intensity of an environment such as this,” Cervera said. The police chief said the gunman “immediately and indiscriminately” fired on his victims, but declined to comment on any possible motive. According to local media, Craddock was 40 years old and had no serious criminal record. The rampage in Virginia Beach was the worst mass shooting in the United States since November 2018, when a dozen people were slain at a Los Angeles-area bar and grill by a gunman who then killed himself. Survivors of Friday’s shooting recounted scenes of pandemonium and fear that erupted as gunshots rang out, and workers scurried frantically for cover. Some said they stacked desks against office doors to barricade themselves in. Cervera has said he will only give the gunman’s name once because city authorities want to focus on his victims. Virginia Beach City Manager Dave Hansen identified the victims during the news conference and said that, except for the contractor, they had worked for Virginia Beach for between 11 months and 41 years. “They leave a void that we will never be able to fill,” Hansen said. The four people who were seriously wounded in the shooting were still being treated at local hospitals. They included a police officer whose life was saved by his ballistic vest, Cervera said. The bloodshed unfolded at Building Two of Virginia Beach’s municipal center complex, where office space for more than 400 employees houses information technology, public works, planning and utilities departments next door to City Hall. The complex lies several miles inland from the town’s popular seashore, situated on the Atlantic coast at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay. Southeast Virginia’s most populous city has roughly 450,000 year-round residents.
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