Friday, 24 July 2015

Drifter from Alabama killed two and wounded in a theater

Gunman killed two wounded nine in a theater on Thursday night
According to source. The gunman who killed two women and wounded nine people here in a theater was a 59-year-old drifter from Alabama who was estranged from his family and appeared to have made getaway plans, law enforcement officials said Friday. But they said they knew little else about him.

The attacker, who took his own life, was identified as John R. Houser. He had lived a 500-mile drive away, in Phenix City, Ala., but had been in Lafayette since early July and was staying in a motel, Chief Jim Craft of the Lafayette Police Department said. He appealed to the public for help in learning more about the gunman.

Mr. Houser had parked a blue 1995 Lincoln Continental, with illegally switched license plates, near an exit door to the Grand Theater, and in his motel room, “we found wigs and glasses and disguises, basically,” Chief Craft said at a Friday morning news conference just outside the crime scene.

“It is apparent that he was intent on shooting and then escaping,” Chief Craft said. “What happened is that the quick law enforcement response forced him back into the theater, at which time he shot himself.”

The superintendent of the Louisiana State Police, Col. Michael D. Edmonson, said, “To put a motive to it is just something that we simply can’t do right now.” He said there was no known connection between the gunman and any of the victims.

Mr. Houser bought a ticket for a showing of the comedy “Trainwreck,” and sat for several minutes in the theater, which had more than 100 people in it, the authorities said. Shortly before 7:30 p.m., he began shooting, firing at least 13 rounds from a .40-caliber handgun.

“He was by himself, he sat by himself, and the first two people he shot were right in front of him,” Chief Craft said.

He identified the two dead women as Mayci Breaux, 21, and Jillian Johnson, 33. The wounded ranged in age from their teens to their 60s, and one was listed Friday in critical condition. Two were treated and released.

No comments: