At least eight people have been killed and multiple others injured after a gunman went on a rampage with an assault rifle at a FedEx warehouse near Indianapolis Airport before killing himself.
Officers say they arrived to an ‘active shooter incident’ and found ‘multiple victims’ with apparent gunshot wounds in a ‘mass casualty event’ on Thursday night. A number of people have been taken to hospital for their injuries.
At least four people were hospitalized, including one person with critical injuries, police said in the early hours of Friday morning. Two others were treated at the scene and released. No law enforcement officers were injured.
‘This is very heartbreaking,’ Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (IMPD) Officer Genae Cook told reports at around 3 a.m. on Friday, hours after the shooting. She said police officers came in contact with an active shooter after they were called shortly after 11pm on Thursday.
The male gunman is understood to have taken his own life, and is the ninth confirmed death from the incident. Police reported finding the alleged shooter’s body at 11:23 p.m. local time.
Two eyewitnesses report seeing a man getting a gun from the trunk of his car. One worker told local media they saw a body on the floor, while another said they heard 10 shots before alerting law enforcement.
It is understood that FedEx employees are not allowed to use their cell phones on the floor of the warehouse and would have been unable to easily dial 911 during the attack.
At around 2:45 a.m. on Friday, around 110 people were anxiously waiting in a nearby hotel for news on their loved ones working at the facility, before the initial death count was confirmed by the police. Those gathered had not heard from their loved ones working inside.
Images from the scene show a heavy police presence. Initial reports suggest that the shooting took place both inside the facility and outside in a parking lot.
All available chaplains in the area have been called to help with the incident.
Officer Cook encouraged anyone who was at the scene to contact the local police, or for those working in the facility to get in touch with their supervisor to let them know if they are safe.
She added there would be another briefing later this morning.
FedEx called the shooting ‘tragic’ in a statement, adding: ‘We are aware of the tragic shooting at our FedEx Ground facility near the Indianapolis airport. Safety is our top priority, and our thoughts are with all those who are affected. We are working to gather more information and are cooperating with investigating authorities.’
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Police are investigating a ‘mass casualty’ shooting at FedEx facility near Indianapolis airport, pictured
IMPD officers say they found ‘multiple victims’, 13News reports. It is not known many people have been injured
Police say they came in contact with an active shooter after they were called shortly after 11pm The male gunman is understood to have taken his own life
Images from the scene show a heavy police presence. Law enforcement were called to the scene at around 11pm local time
Law enforcement were called to the scene at around 11pm local time, according to Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department Officer Genae Cook.
Live video from news outlets at the scene showed crime scene tape in the parking lot outside the facility.
Police dispatch audio details how one caller heard 10 shots before alerting law enforcement; another told cops there was a ‘possible person laying shot near security in the front entrance of the building’.
One victim’s uncle told Fox59 his niece had been sitting in her car when a gunman opened fire on her. He said she was recovering in hospital.
Another man told WTTV that his niece was sitting in her car in the driver’s seat when the gunfire erupted, and she was wounded. ‘She got shot on her left arm,’ said Parminder Singh. ‘She’s fine, she’s in the hospital now.’
He said his niece did not know the shooter.
WRTV reports that workers hid under conveyor belts during the incident.
Timothy Boillat, another employee at the facility, told WISH-TV that he saw around 30 police cars arriving at the scene as he witnessed the shooting unfold.
‘After hearing the shootings, I did see a body on the floor,’ he said. ‘Luckily, I was far enough away to where he [the shooter] didn’t see me.’
The facility employs more than 4,500 people; it is the company’s second largest hub in the world.
Pictures from a Holiday Inn near the airport showed family members of those who work in the facility waiting to hear an update about their loved ones.
Some said employees aren’t allowed to have their phones with them while working shifts at the facility, making it difficult to contact them, WTHR-TV reported.
Pictured: A statement released by FedEx following the news of the shooting
Jeremiah Miller had just finished his shift at the facility when he heard up to 10 shots.
He told WISH: ‘I saw a man with a submachine gun of some sort, an automatic rifle, and he was firing in the open.’
Sgt. John Perrine, of Indiana State police, had tweeted: ‘I-70 is closed in both directions between I-465 and Ronald Regan Pkwy due to police activity in the area. Please seek alternate routes.’ The interstate is now reopen.
Anyone with loved ones who work at facility that cannot be reached are asked to go to the Holiday Inn at 8555 Stansted Drive.
In the early hours of Friday morning, FedEx released a statement saying the company was working to learn more information about the shooting.
Two eyewitnesses report seeing a man getting a gun from the trunk of his car. One worker said they saw a body on the floor
Two eyewitnesses report seeing a man getting a gun from the trunk of his car
Images from the scene show a heavy police presence. Initial reports suggest that the shooting took place inside the facility and outside in a parking lot
Police are investigating a shooting at FedEx facility near Indianapolis airport, according to reports Thursday (stock image)
The attack follows several mass shootings in recent weeks.
At the end of last month, four people, including a child, were shot dead in an office building in southern California.
On March 22, 10 people were killed in a shooting at a grocery store in Boulder, Colorado.
That came less than a week after a man shot and killed eight people, including six women of Asian descent, at spas in Atlanta, Georgia.
Nearly 40,000 people in the United States die each year from guns, more than half of those being suicides.
The issue of gun regulation in the United States is politically fraught.
President Joe Biden this month announced six executive measures he said would help stem the gun violence crisis.
‘It’s an international embarrassment,’ Biden told Congress members and gun control activists at a White House ceremony.
‘Enough prayers,’ the Democrat said. ‘Time for some action.’
The move was immediately attacked by Republicans, with the party’s senior leader in the House of Representatives, Kevin McCarthy, warning of ‘unconstitutional overreach.’