A shooting at Fort Hood in Texas on Wednesday has left four people dead, including the gunman, and 16 wounded, according to military officials.
“The shooter is dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound,” Lt. Gen. Mark A. Milley, the commanding officer at the military post in Killeen, told reporters Wednesday night. “In regard to the investigation, at this time, there is no indication that this incident is related to terrorism, although we are not ruling anything out.”
While Milley would not reveal the name or rank of the shooter, a soldier, he confirmed the following:
- The shooter was male.
- All wounded or killed in the shooting were members of the U.S. military.
- The shooter served four months in Iraq in 2011, where he sustained a “traumatic brain injury.” He arrived at Fort Hood in February.
- The shooter was being examined for possible mental health problems, including posttraumatic stress disorder. He had not received a diagnosis at the time of the shooting.
- He used a recently purchased .45-caliber Smith & Wesson semiautomatic pistol during the shooting.
- His family, which lives in the area, has not yet been notified.
- There is no known motive for the crime, and officials are “digging deep into his background.”
The shooting occurred at around 4:30 p.m. or 5:30 p.m. EST. A shelter-in-place order was put into effect, and the Army base remained in lockdown until the order was lifted four hours later. Injured personnel were transported to Carl R. Darnall Medical Center and other nearby hospitals.
Waco television station KCEN is live streaming coverage of the incident here.
President Obama, in Chicago, spoke to several reporters Wednesday night about the shooting, according to pool reports. “We’re all following it closely,” he said. “The situation is fluid right now, but my national security team is in close contact not just with the Defense Department but with the FBI.
“We don’t yet know what happened tonight, but obviously that sense of safety has been broken once again,” he added. “We need to find out exactly what happened.”
In 2009, Fort Hood was the scene of a shooting that killed 13 people, carried out by a military psychiatrist who proclaimed jihad against the United States.
Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, also released a statement.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the Fort Hood community in the aftermath of this tragedy,” he said. “Many questions remain and our focus is on supporting the victims and their families…. This is a community that has faced and overcome crises with resilience and strength.”
Officials at Scott and White Memorial Hospital, 30 miles from Fort Hood, told reporters the injured victims are in serious condition.
“We were first notified shortly after 5 this evening that there was a shooting incident that occurred over on the fort,” a hospital spokesman said after the shooting. “Over the next couple of hours we have received now a total of four patients who have been transferred to our [hospital]. Two more are en route, I understand right now. And we’re preparing to take those immediately to the operating room because they have some very, very severe injuries. So that’s kind of where we are with this.”
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel called the shooting a “terrible tragedy” in a statement. “My sympathies go out to this strong and resilient community, which has experienced this kind of senseless violence all too recently,” he said.