Shortly after 10:00pm on Wednesday night, a 22-year old male gunman walked into a grocery store in Elkhart, Indiana and began shooting.
Martin’s Supermarket, located at 3900 Bristol Street, was open but very few people were inside shopping. When the gunman entered he shot one female then walked twelve aisles over and shot another female. Both were found dead at the scene when police arrived.
One of the victims was a 22-year old employee of Martin’s. The other was a 44-year old shopper. It is unclear if the gunman knew either of the women.
Two Elkhart police were nearby responding to an unrelated call when they heard gunshots. They arrived at the grocery store within three minutes and saw the suspect pointing his gun at a third person. When the gunman saw the officers he turned his large caliber, semiautomatic handgun at them. The Elkhart police then shot and killed the man.
“The subject is a male white in his 20s, lives in the area. Everything that transpired before that is still part of the investigation,” Indiana State Police said in a press release issued this morning.
Sgt. Trenton Smith of the Indiana State Police said, “This is still really early in the investigation. We haven’t really drawn any conclusions or anything out of it at this point. We do have a lot of things to look at as far as the video surveillance, a lot of people to talk to. Our officers and the city police department are at the police department interviewing a lot of the people that were in the store, any eyewitnesses at this time.”
According to the South Bend Tribute, Indiana State Police are handling the investigation because it is an officer-involved shooting.
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A 911 call was made to the Elkhart Police at 10:07pm but the quick action of the nearby officers most likely saved lives.
“They acted with bravery,” Sgt. Smith said. “That was an effort to stop what he was doing which was killing people in the store.”
A witness said they saw the gunman enter the store through the deli door.
Along with the semiautomatic handgun, a large hunting knife was also found near the suspect.
Late last night Martin’s posted on their Facebook page, thanking the community.
Names of the victims and the gunman will not be released until next of kin is notified by the Elkhart Police. The names of the two officers who arrived at the scene will be released at the discretion of the police department.
Image via Wikimedia Commons