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Gunman takes own life after wounding 4 near elite Washington prep school, police say

WASHINGTON: A gunman opened fireplace on random victims from a sniper’s nest in an house constructing close to an elite prep college within the nation’s capital on Friday, wounding 4 folks, earlier than taking his personal life as police closed in, officers mentioned.

Police mentioned the suspect, Raymond Spencer, 23, of suburban Fairfax, Virginia, was initially recognized from video he had posted on social media that appeared to indicate gunshots fired from the vantage level of an upper-floor window, with the misspelled label: “Shool shooting!”

Washington Metropolitan Police Chief Robert Contee advised a late-night information convention the video “looks very much to be authentic,“ but it remained uncertain whether the footage was streamed live or had been posted after it was recorded.

Police had issued a bulletin with photographs of Spencer hours earlier saying they were seeking him as a “person of interest” of their investigation.

The taking pictures and manhunt paralyzed the upscale Van Ness neighborhood of northwest Washington subsequent to the Edmund Burke School, a non-public faculty preparatory academy, simply as lessons have been about to be dismissed for the day.

The college and different properties within the neighborhood have been positioned underneath a safety lockdown, with frightened college students texting anxious dad and mom as police mounted a door-to-door seek for the suspect.

With assist from eyewitness stories, police managed to pinpoint the gunman’s place to the fifth ground of a “particular apartment building” and in the end “breached the location where the suspect took his own life,“ Contee said.

Police seized more than half a dozen firearms, including several rifles, and large amounts of ammunition in the apartment, which had been arranged in a “sniper-type setup” with a tripod weapons mount, the chief mentioned.

“His intent was to kill and hurt members of our community,“ but investigators had yet to determine a motive, Contee said, adding that the gunman acted alone.

The four victims were shot at random as “they were going about their business … on the streets of the District of Columbia,“ he told reporters.

Three people struck by gunfire were taken to area hospitals – a 54-year-old man and a woman in her mid-30s with severe wounds, and a 12-year-old girl wounded in the arm, Assistant Police Chief Stuart Emerman said during an earlier briefing.

A fourth victim, a woman in her mid-60s, was treated on the scene for a slight graze wound, Emerman said.

Eyewitnesses told Reuters and local media outlets they heard multiple bursts of rapid gunfire. Contee said at least 20 shots were fired. ‘SOMETHING BAD HAPPENING’

The late-afternoon violence unfolded along a busy Connecticut Avenue corridor that is also home to several foreign embassies, the Howard University School of Law and a campus of the University of the District of Columbia.

Deaven Rector, 22, a law student, told Reuters he heard three bursts of gunfire that seemed to emanate from the AVA Van Ness apartment building where he lives, and which was evacuated.

“Right now, the police have secured the area, and it’s safe, but the fact that this type of chaos can be caused by a maniac on a regular Friday… The kids were about to get out of school,“ he said.

Jennifer DiGiacinto told Reuters she learned of the shooting from a text message from her son, a Burke School 11th grader.

“He said, ‘There’s something bad happening, I need you to turn on the news.’ I said, ‘Why, what’s happening?’ And he said, ‘Gunfire, I’m under a desk, we’re barricaded in.’”

Local information footage confirmed Connecticut Avenue blockaded by emergency autos. Dozens of police autos with flashing lights have been parked outdoors the college constructing, as police in full tactical gear and a few in camouflage assembled close by.

Local NBC affiliate WRC-TV confirmed evacuees from a constructing working down a sidewalk, some with their fingers raised.

Lamenting the trauma of gun violence that has change into commonplace within the United States, Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser advised reporters, “Unfortunately, I had to look in parents’ eyes tonight who were terrified. And they were terrified thinking of what might happen to their children.”-Reuters

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