Seven people died at a Walmart in Virginia on Tuesday night in a shooting rampage that an employee claimed was carried out by a store manager who then turned the gun on himself.
Officers responded about 10:15 p.m. to a report of a shooting at the Walmart on Sam’s Circle in Chesapeake, where they found multiple dead people and injured, police said.
The city said in a tweet at 4:30 a.m. Wednesday that there were seven fatalities, including the shooter.
Authorities believe there was one shooter, Chesapeake Officer Leo Kosinski told reporters earlier.
“It was wild. It was a manager – one of the managers,” an employee in a Walmart uniform said in a Facebook livestream, explaining that he narrowly avoided being killed in the rampage.
“He blew his brains out and everything. He killed the girl in there and everything. He came in and started spraying. I’m sorry for the victims,” he said.
“I just left the break room … the manager come in there and started capping people up in there, started shooting. Sadly, we lost a few of our associates,” he added as a woman was heard crying at his side.
Police have not confirmed reports about who the gunman was, but emphasized that the person was dead. Authorities also have not said how the gunman died.
Kosinski said he didn’t believe police fired shots, but could not say whether the shooter was dead of a self-inflicted gunshot.
Walmart employee says manager opened fire in mass shooting
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The call reporting the shooting came in at 10:12 p.m. when the Walmart was still open to the public and night shift workers had just recently checked in, WAVY reported.
A greeter on duty told the news station that the shooting erupted in the back of the store. One person also was reportedly found dead outside the front entrance.
A spokesperson for Sentara Norfolk General Hospital confirmed to WAVY that five people were being treated there.
“We are shocked at this tragic event at our Chesapeake, Virginia store,” Walmart said in a tweet early Wednesday.
“We’re praying for those impacted, the community and our associates. We’re working closely with law enforcement, and we are focused on supporting our associates,” it added.
The shooting comes three days after Anderson Lee Aldrich allegedly opened fire at a gay nightclub in Colorado Springs, killing five people and wounding scores more before being tackled by patrons.
It also brought back memories of a 2019 shooting at a Walmart in El Paso, where a gunman police said was targeting Mexicans killed 22 people.
US Sen. Mark Warner posted on Twitter that he is “sickened by reports of yet another mass shooting, this time at a Walmart in Chesapeake.”
State Sen. Louise Lucas also tweeted that she was “absolutely heartbroken that America’s latest mass shooting took place in a Walmart in my district.”
Chesapeake, Virginia’s second-largest city, lies next to the seaside communities of Norfolk and Virginia Beach.
With Post wires
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