Gunman Opens Fire at Chicago VA Hospital, No Injuries
Witnesses said a man who appeared to be in his 30s or 40s was seen outside the Jesse Brown VA Medical Center carrying an assault rifle.
A man armed with an assault rifle opened fire at Jesse Brown VA Medical Center in Chicago on Monday.
According to the FBI, there were no injuries from the shooting, reports CNN.
The gunman initially began firing at the building, shattering glass, and then entered the building while continuing to fire. One witness said a car tried to run over the shooter as he began to reload his weapon outside the building.
“I spoke with him,” said Oliver Robinson, a witness outside the hospital. “He was walking through, and he was saying ‘Who hit me? I’m looking for who hit me?’ That’s when I told him, ‘Hey man, you don’t have to go through this, put that down.’ And at that time the VA police took him down.”
Jeffrey S. Sallet, a special FBI agent, said the VA police responded within 30 seconds and stopped the gunman without firing a shot. The shooter was then taken into police custody.
“We avoided tragedy here in the city of Chicago today,” Sallet said.
The medical center, which is a 200-bed acute care facility that provides care to approximately 62,000 veterans, was put on lockdown when the gunfire went off and people were ordered to shelter in place.
The Chicago Police Department and VA Hospital security officers searched the building and confirmed there were no other threats. Because of this, officials decided not to have the building evacuated.
“I cannot tell you with all of the things that are going on in this country right now, how lucky we are and how blessed the city of Chicago is that we are out here talking about a subject who has in custody but did not hurt anyone,” Sallet said.
The incident is currently under investigation and the shooter’s motive remains unclear. Lori Lohar, director of the medical center, said the suspect is not believed to be a veteran.
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