ATLANTA (CN) — Police have captured the person suspected of shooting five people in a Midtown Atlanta medical building Wednesday morning.
Authorities arrested the suspect at large, 24-year-old, Deion Patterson around 7:30 p.m. after tackling him near the Waterford Place condominiums by the Battery Atlanta in Cobb County.
Shots were reportedly fired around 12:30 p.m. inside what appears to be the offices of Laureate Medical Group of the Northside Hospital Midtown medical building. The 12-story facility sits on West Peachtree Street, between 12th and 13th Streets, a commercial area with many office towers and high-rise apartments. Shortly after 1 p.m., police announced that no suspect was in custody and that it was an “active, fluid situation.”
After a carjacking was reported “not long after the shooting,” near the area, police began investigating if it was connected to the shooter. The vehicle was found inside a parking garage near the Battery complex, about 10 miles northwest of downtown.
Several tips called in from locals and camera access from the Department of Transportation were able to give police the exact location of a building Patterson had walked into, Cobb County police said in a press conference following the arrest.
“We did get information that the shooter may have come to Cobb County, so we began to actually check our flock cameras,” Delk said. “We went back and did discover that the vehicle had entered Cobb County," said Cobb police spokesman Sgt. Wayne Delk around 6:30 p.m.
Police had sent out surveillance photos of Patterson, who was shown wearing a gray sweatshirt with the hood pulled up, dark pants, with a medical mask on and what appears to be a bag across the front of his body. They asked for anyone with information to immediately call 911, but warned that he was believed to be armed and dangerous.
The suspect was reportedly discharged from the U.S. Coast Guard in January, but the reason why is not yet clear. The agency said he entered the Coast Guard in July 2018 and last served as an Electrician's Mate Second Class. A spokesperson told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that the agency is working with the Atlanta Police Department and local authorities in the investigation.
Several officers, FBI agents and heavily armed agents from the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives were seen arriving at the building. Several fire trucks, law enforcement vehicles and multiple helicopters were also on scene.
Large crowds of people have been seen evacuated to a nearby Marriott hotel. It is not yet clear if those being moved to the 14th Street hotel are hospital employees.
All five victims were adult women, but it is not yet clear why they were shot, said Atlanta Police Chief Darin Schierbaum Wednesday afternoon.
One of them, a 39 year-old, was found pronounced dead at the scene and the four others were rushed to Grady Memorial Hospital for treatment.
Chief Medical Officer Dr. Robert Jansen reported that one of them is stable, while the other three patients arrived in critical condition. Two of them are in ICU after undergoing surgery for several hours.
The shooting is the latest ramification of gun violence that has been wrecking cities across the nation in 2023.
As of early May, the Gun Violence Archive has counted more than 188 mass shootings in the United States this year. Last year, the group counted 647 mass shootings. Of those, 21 involved five or more fatalities.
Gun violence has escalated amongst the youngest Georgians, with at least 25 teenagers and children in the state having been shot to death since the start of 2023. The youngest victim was just two years old.
Atlanta City Councilman Amir Farokhi, who represents the Midtown district, released a statement calling for increased gun control measures.
“I hope APD apprehends the shooter quickly,” Farokhi told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “My heart hurts for those injured and the family of the deceased. Gun violence has become a daily occurrence in our country.
“We cannot let it become normalized,” he added. “The time is past due for common sense gun reform. We all deserve to feel safe everywhere.”Follow @@Megwiththenews
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