Three dead in US theatre shooting
Washington, July 24 (IANS) A 58-year-old man killed two people and injured nine others inside a movie theatre in the US state of Louisiana before turning the gun on himself and taking his own life, authorities said on Friday.
The incident occurred on Thursday night at Grand Theatre 16 in Lafayette, a city of about 120,000 people.
The gunman was identified as John Russel Houser, Lafayette Police chief Jim Craft said.
As the lights dimmed for the screening of “Trainwreck”, the gunman stood up and pulled out a handgun and began firing indiscriminately, CNN reported. At least 100 people were present for the screening.
Craft described Houser as “kind of a drifter” who was from Alabama and had been in Lafayette since early July, staying at a local hotel.
Houser fired at least 13 rounds, according to the police chief.
Mayci Breaux, 21, died at the scene, and Jillian Johnson, 33, died later at a nearby hospital, the police chief added.
“There’s nothing to believe that there was any kind of motive,” Michael Edmonson of the Louisiana State Police said.
“Whenever we hear about these senseless acts of violence, it makes us both furious and sad at the same time,” said Louisiana Indian-American Governor Bobby Jindal from the scene of the shooting.
“This is an awful night for Lafayette, this is an awful night for Louisiana, this is an awful night for the United States. But we will get through this,” Jindal, who is one of the 16 Republican presidential hopefuls, added.
The shooting occurred days after the conviction of James Holmes in the Aurora, Colorado, theatre shooting on July 19, 2012, that left 12 people killed and 10 injured.
On July 19, 2012, Holmes opened fire during a screening of “The Dark Knight Rises” using an AR-15 rifle, a 12-gauge shotgun and at least one .40-calibre handgun. The rampage ended with the neuro-science student’s arrest outside the theatre.