Thursday

Army says 12 dead, 31 injured at Fort Hood

Army says 12 dead, 31 injured at Fort Hood

The following story is from MSNBC:

Gunman killed, two suspects — all soldiers — in custody in Texas incident
A U.S. soldier opened fire Thursday at Fort Hood, Texas, killing at least 11 people and wounding 31 others, military officials said. The gunman was shot to death, and two others were in custody.

Lt. Gen. Robert W. Cone, commanding general of the Army’s III Corps, who confirmed the shootings, said the gunman used two handguns. NBC News’ Pete Williams reported that a U.S. official identified the gunman as Maj. Malik Nadal Hasan, who was 39 or 40.
A senior Obama administration official told NBC News that the shootings could have been a criminal matter rather than a terrorism-related attack and that there was no intelligence to suggest a plot against Fort Hood.

Military and local hospital official said the victims were a mixture of men and women, military and civilian. At least one of those killed was a civilian police officer, Cone said. At least four local SWAT officers were among those wounded, NBC affiliate KCEN-TV of Waco reported.

Fort Hood, one of the largest military complexes in the world, was on lockdown, as were schools in the area. Dozens of agents of the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives responded to the post, federal officials said.

Speaking in Washington, President Barack Obama called the shootings a “horrific incident.”

“It’s difficult enough when we lose these great Americans in battles overseas,” Obama said at the Interior Department. “It’s horrifying that they should come under fire at an Army base on American soil.”

Shootings in deployment processing center

Emergency Services officials at Fort Hood said the incident began about 1:30 p.m. CT (2:30 ET) when the gunman opened fire in the Soldiers Readiness Processing Center on the west side of the base. A spokesman for the base, Sgt. Major Jamie Posten, said the processing center was where soldiers “cycle through as they prepare to deploy.”

Retired Army Col. Greg Schannep, an aide to Rep. John Carter, R-Texas, who was on the post to attend a graduation service, told the base newspaper, The Fort Hood Sentinel, that he heard “three or four volleys of shots, with eight to 12 shots in each volley.”

“Initially, I thought it was a training exercise,” he said. But then, “a soldier came running past me and said, ‘Sir, there is someone shooting.’

“As he ran past me, I saw blood on his back,” Schannep told the base paper. “I don’t think he even knew he had been shot.”
Fort Hood is adjacent to Killeen, about 60 miles northeast of Austin. The sprawling complex is home to at least 4,929 active-duty officers and 45,414 enlisted. Civilian employees total nearly 9,000.

A spokesman for the Army, Lt. Col. Lee M. Packnett, said he was unaware whether security measures were put in place at other military bases. A spokesman at Fort Lewis, Wash., said the incident was being treated as isolated.

Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchinson, R-Texas, said in a statement: “I am shocked and saddened by today’s outburst of violence at Fort Hood that has cost seven of our brave service members their lives and has gravely injured others. My heart goes out to their loved ones.”

Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s campaign spokesperson said the governor was in Denton, scheduled to attend a campaign event, when word of the shooting occurred. There was no word on whether he had left Denton or whether he was headed to Fort Hood.

Milly Land, who works at the base fitness center, said she was headed for the graduation ceremony at 2 p.m. at the Howze Theater when the campus was locked down. She went back to the fitness center. She said she spoke by phone with friends at the soldier processing center, who said a gunman walked in about 1:30, walked to the medical area of the processing center, and started shooting. A second gunman was shooting at the theater next door, she said.

Fort Hood has seen other violence in recent years. In September 2008, a 21-year-old 1st Cavalry Division soldier shot his lieutenant to death and then killed himself. Spc. Jody Michael Wirawan of Eagle River, Alaska, shot himself to death after shooting 1st Lt. Robert Bartlett Fletcher, 24, of Jensen Beach, Fla. to death.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Be respectful or be deleted. Your choice.