In the bloodiest mass shooting in American history this year, police in the US state of Maine launched a massive manhunt for the shooter who murdered at least 16 people at a bowling alley and a pub.
On Wednesday night, a group of youngsters met for youth league games at a bowling facility in Lewiston. A cornhole team for deaf individuals held an evening of competitions four miles away.
Seven individuals were murdered at a bowling tournament at Just-in-Time Recreation as a result of the shooter’s onslaught of gunfire. About 12 minutes later, the attacker proceeded on to Schemengees Bar and Grille, where he killed an additional eight people. 18 people have passed away, including those who passed away later in hospitals.
“They’re just innocent people out for a night of bowling,” said Kim McConville, whose cousin and his son, 14, were slain at the bowling alley. “This was a kid-friendly activity. Who anticipates a shooter entering a kid’s event?”
The suspect in the shootings left at least 18 people dead and 13 more injured in Maine on Wednesday night. He is still being sought in a frenzied manhunt.
The suspect has been identified by authorities as 40-year-old Robert Card. According to many law enforcement authorities, Card is a licensed weapons instructor and a member of the US Army Reserve. Robert Card should be regarded as armed and dangerous after being captured on security video aiming a semi-automatic weapon with an extended clip as he entered the Lewiston bowling alley.
After the gunfire on Wednesday evening began, images of individuals running from the scene in fear were carried by news organizations.
An unidentified survivor told CNN that the attacker was within 15 feet (5 meters) of him when he started shooting. At first, he believed it to be a balloon exploding.
“And as soon as I turned and saw it was not a balloon and he was holding a weapon, I just booked it down the lane, and I slid basically into where the pins are and climbed up into the machine and was on top of the machines for about 10 minutes until the cops got there,” according to CNN.
Others placed the death toll at 16, while Lewiston city councilor Robert McCarthy told CNN on Wednesday night that as many as 22 people may have perished. Mike Sauschuck, a public safety officer in Maine, described the situation as “very fluid” and said he wasn’t ready to provide a dead toll. Reporters were informed by him that police were scouring the streets for the shooter.
“We have literally hundreds of police officers working around the state of Maine to investigate this case and locate Mr. Card,” he stated.
At 6:56 p.m., the first 911 call was received by the Auburn communications center. According to police, the communications center received many calls of a “active shooter” inside Schemengees Bar and Grille, located approximately 4 miles from Just-In-Time and also in Lewiston. The “active shooter situation” was alerted to the Maine State Police, who advised locals to lock their doors and seek refuge indoors.
At around the same time, the Androscoggin County Sheriff’s Office released images of a man carrying a gun and sporting blue and brown clothing.
The public was alerted via social media by police in Lewiston, the second-largest city in Maine, that there was a “active shooter incident” going on at Schemengees and Just-in-Time Recreation.
On the “TODAY” program on NBC on Thursday morning, Auburn’s mayor, Jason Levesque, mentioned that the bowling alley had hosted a youth event the previous evening.
Auburn, which is close to Lewiston, issued a warning at 8:26 o’clock.
“All Auburn and Lewiston residents are strongly urged to shelter in place, lock all doors, and report suspicious individuals and activities to 9-1-1,” the warning stated. “Most businesses in the area have closed or are closing.”
Lewiston police issued a photo of a white SUV with what appears to be a black front bumper at 9:17 PM and encouraged members of the public to contact them if they recognized the vehicle. Additionally, Lewiston police got a call at 9:26 identifying Card as the individual in the circulated images.
At 10:52 p.m., Lewiston police formally named Card a person of interest, posting a photo of him to Facebook along with the warning: “CARD should be considered armed and dangerous. If you know where he is, kindly inform law enforcement.
The following morning, at 10:30 a.m., State Public Safety Commissioner Michael Sauschuck declared that Card is a Bowdoin graduate. Authorities publicly identified Card as a suspect in the shootings at the press conference about the manhunt, noting that an arrest warrant had been issued accusing him of at least eight counts of murder.
According to Ross, the figures were based on the identification of eight of the 18 fatalities. He noted that the identities of the 10 unidentified victims are unknown.
Ross said that eight casualties were discovered at Schemengees and seven victims were discovered at Just-In-Time Recreation, adding that three victims who were transported to nearby hospitals were later pronounced dead, as written in NBC News.
According to his father, Leroy Walker, Joseph Walker, the manager of Schemengees Bar & Grille, was one of the fatalities. After grabbing a butcher knife from the bar and attempting “to go at the gunman to stop him from shooting anybody else,” Walker’s son was killed heroically, Walker claimed.
However, the shooter shot Joseph twice, Walker claimed, before crying.
Walker said that his kid had “thousands of people” who liked him and who “loved him.”
Walker remarked, “He’d help anybody, work with anybody, put on whatever type of tournament they needed, and raise money for a ton of organizations. On November 11, he was actually planning to host a cornhole competition to generate money for the veterans.”