Oklahoma Walmart shooting: Gunman shot himself after killing 2 others in parking lot
At least three people have been shot and killed at a Walmart store in Oklahoma, according to local media citing the Oklahoma Highway Patrol. The Duncan police chief, Danny Ford, confirmed three people were killed.
According to KOCO News, the incident supposedly took place in the store’s parking lot and two men and one woman were reportedly found dead inside vehicles. ABC 7 News said the suspect was one of the people killed. Ford told The Associated Press that investigators believe the gunman shot the male and female victims and then turned the gun on himself.
The shooting happened Monday morning at 10 am at the store in Duncan, Oklahoma. A dispatcher told The Associated Press that “everyone is at the scene.” As per The Daily Beast, Duncan Public Schools officials said that while all schools are on lockdown, the police department has given them the all-clear and classes have resumed.
“Duncan Public Schools is aware of the report of a shooting at Duncan Walmart. As always we are taking every precaution to protect our staff and students. At this time all schools are in lockdown due to this report. Schools will operate as normal, but visitors will not be admitted until police report it is safe,” the authorities wrote on Facebook.
However, Stephens County District Attorney Jason Hicks authorities said during the news conference Monday afternoon that there was never an active shooter inside the store and he described the shooting as an isolated incident. He says the shooter did not enter the business center.
Police chief Ford spoke to reporters at the press conference. He described the gun as a semi-automatic but said he had no further details. He said the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation was still processing the scene. Ford said he believed nine shots were fired. He the three who died knew each other but declined to describe their relationships or other identifying information pending notification of immediate family.
He said all three were dead when police arrived just minutes after the shooting.
Walmart spokeswoman LeMia Jenkins initially said no staff were involved. Jenkins later released a statement offering thoughts and prayers for the family of the woman killed in the shooting, who she said had been with the company for less than two months. Jenkins said the woman was at the Walmart during her free time and wasn’t scheduled to work that day.
It was at least the third shooting at a Walmart in the U.S. this year. A Walmart store in El Paso, Texas, reopened Thursday after being closed since August, when a gunman opened fire in the busy store, killing 22. Just days before, two Walmart employees in Mississippi were killed by a man authority described as a disgruntled Walmart worker.
-with AP inputs