A gunman killed at least four people on a hospital campus in Tulsa, Oklahoma on Wednesday, police said, the latest mass shooting to rock America coming as Texas families bury their dead after a school massacre just a week ago.
The suspect, who was armed with a rifle and a handgun, was also killed in the attack on the campus of St. Francis Health System Hospital, police said.
“Right now we have four civilians who are dead, we have one shooter who is dead, and at this time we believe he was self-inflicted,” the Tulsa Police Department deputy chief said. , Eric Dalgleish.
He said officers responded immediately after emergency calls arrived that a shooter had reached the second floor of a clinic attached to St. Francis. Police went floor by floor, room by room in an effort to clear the building during what authorities described as an active shooter situation.
Earlier, Tulsa Police Capt. Richard Meulenberg said officers were treating the scene as “catastrophic,” with “multiple” people shot and “multiple injuries.”
It was unclear how many other people might have been injured.
Dalgleish said the entire assault, from when emergency calls came in to when officers engaged the shooter, lasted about four minutes.
US President Joe Biden has been briefed on the Tulsa shooting, the White House said in a statement, adding that the administration has offered support to local officials.
Elizabeth Buchner, a paralegal who lives behind the clinic where the shooting happened, said she rushed out of her home when she heard helicopters and a louder commotion coming from the direction of the ‘hospital.
“It was the most law enforcement I have ever seen in one place in my entire life,” Buchner, 43, told AFP by phone.
She said she saw a tactical team rush inside one of the buildings, in a response she described as “quick and strong”, without “hesitation”.
The shooting is the latest in a series of deadly assaults by gunmen that have rocked the United States over the past month.
On May 14, a white supremacist targeting African Americans killed 10 people at a grocery store in Buffalo, New York. The shooter survived and faces charges.
Ten days later, an 18-year-old gunman armed with an AR-15 burst into an elementary school in the small Texas town of Uvalde and killed 21 people, including 19 young children, before being shot dead by the police.
On Wednesday, one of the two teachers killed in this attack was buried in Uvalde, a day after the first funeral of the children.
Gun regulation faces deep resistance in the United States, from most Republicans and some Democrats in rural states.
But Biden – who visited Uvalde over the weekend – pledged earlier this week to “keep pushing” for reform, saying: “I think things have gotten so bad that everyone becomes more rational about it.”
Some key federal lawmakers also expressed cautious optimism, and a bipartisan group of senators worked throughout the weekend to seek out possible areas of compromise.
They reportedly focused on laws to raise the minimum age for buying firearms or to allow police to remove guns from people seen as a threat to themselves or others – but not on an outright ban on high-powered rifles like the weapons used at Uvalde and Buffle.
(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)