At least six dead in US Walmart shooting

At least six dead in US Walmart shooting


A gunman killed at least six people at a Walmart store on Tuesday, just before the Thanksgiving holiday, in the second mass shooting in the United States in four days.

Police said the gunman was also dead after the overnight attack in Chesapeake, Virginia, which followed a weekend shooting attack on an LGBTQ club in Colorado that killed five people.

“The Chesapeake Police Department has confirmed 7 deaths, including the shooter, from last night’s shooting at Walmart in Sam’s Circle,” the city confirmed on its Twitter account.

Chesapeake Police Officer Leo Kosinski previously told reporters there had been multiple deaths at the megastore, which local media reported was busy with holiday shoppers.

CNN quoted a law enforcement source as saying the attacker was believed to be an employee or former employee of the store who began shooting other workers in a room used for staff breaks.

At one point, the shooter turned the gun on himself, CNN quoted the source as saying.

Emergency calls were first made just after 10:00 p.m. Tuesday (3:00 a.m. GMT Wednesday) while the store was still open, with emergency responders and tactical teams arriving at the scene immediately after arriving, Kosinski said.

US media reported witnesses said the shooting began at the back of the store and at least five injured were taken to hospital.

“We believe it was a lone gunman and that lone gunman is deceased at this point,” Kosinski said, adding that he did not believe the police fired any shots.

In the hours that followed, news footage showed a large police presence around the Walmart, located about 150 miles (240 kilometers) southeast of the US capital, Washington.

– “Senseless violence” –

Kosinski said officers and investigators carefully swept the store and secured the area.

Walmart, the largest retailer in the United States, issued a statement early Wednesday saying, “We are shocked by this tragic event.”

The company added that it is “praying for those affected, the community and our employees. We work closely with law enforcement and are focused on supporting our employees.”

Virginia State Senator Louise Lucas, representing the Chesapeake region, said she was “heartbroken that America’s recent mass shooting took place in my district.”

“I will not rest until we find solutions to end this epidemic of gun violence in our country that has claimed so many lives,” she wrote on Twitter.

The shooting happened at a major retailer less than 48 hours before Americans celebrate Thanksgiving nationwide.

“Tragically, our community suffers another incident of senseless gun violence as families gather for Thanksgiving,” Congressman Bobby Scott of Virginia tweeted.

The incident came three nights after a gunman opened fire at an LGBTQ nightclub in Colorado Springs, killing five people and wounding at least 18 in what is being investigated as a possible hate crime.

Authorities said the suspect, identified as 22-year-old Anderson Lee Aldrich, had used a long rifle at the club where party-goers were celebrating Transgender Memorial Day, which pays tribute to transgender people who have been victims of violent attacks .

Gun violence is happening at an alarming rate in the United States, where more than 600 mass shootings have taken place so far in 2022, according to the Gun Violence Archive website.

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